Think of a time you attended a new event. It might be something as small as a community craft beer tasting. In that first year, you may have noticed a few logistical issues, but the event had something special. The organizer put their best effort into it. The vendors were excited. The ticket holders were curious and ready to have fun.
Maybe you buy a ticket and attend the event a few years later. The event is better produced. There are noticeably more people. But it has also gotten more commercial. You can see staff working through a process. The ticket takers scan tickets but don’t smile or chat. The on-the-floor organizers are racing about too rushed to talk. Now that the event is a success the organizers turn to efficiency and profitability.
There is a real danger of snuffing out the spark that made a new offering so great the first year by the third, or fourth, or twentieth year. This dynamic is not unique to events, and it can happen with any repetitive offering from research reports to journals. The association tendency of pulling out last year’s punch list exacerbates this problem.
The most useful mindset is to approach each offering like it is the first time you are launching it.