Dear members, ambassadors of Turkey and the team at the headquarters of IN,
I think montly IN events should have a mission of facilitating IN members to connect and keep in touch and create a medium for them to establish social and professional ties, to get assistance in a foreign country and finally establish a sense of belonging and loyalty to the organisation (ie.IN). If we evaluate IN monthly events with this perspective, I think the present structure does not satisfy this mission.
Lately the montly events started taking the form of disco type, party events involving loud music and dancing. Venues such as The Hall, Babylon, Nu Teras etc. are selected and they are all large crowd, loud music party venues. With its new structure, it creates an occasion for members to have fun at a party once in a month but it does not fulfill its mission. Idea of fun is quite different from one person to another and not everybody finds it enjoyful to party under loud music.
Also there are lots of activity groups like Party Zone that effectively organises parties. Istanbul as well has ample opportunities for similar parties. If you drop by venues like Babylon, The Hall, Nu Teras any night, you will find a party with such a similar large crowd. So it is not something rare and exclusive to IN.
Organising montly IN events in the form of parties, automatically excludes members that feel as a part of IN and that are ready to be more involved but that does not necessarily wish to party with all the members each month. If monthly events are organised in this manner, then there is no all-encompassing event that brings a wide spectrum of members together.
What monthly IN events should do is to gather as many members as possible once in a month so that they meet other members and continue their ties with each other and with the organisation. This way, they would have a sense of belonging and a greater desire for involvement more in the activities IN.
When I first joined IN, I remember that the monthly events were mostly in the form of coctail parties organised at exclusive 5 star venue like Park Hyatt, Hilton, Ulus 29 etc. If I rememer well, the music was not at all loud until 11 or at least it was loud in a smaller corner of the event where people preferred to dance there but otherwise, for the ones that preferred to talk, it was comfortable enough to pursue a conversation.
For example, at the last monthly event organised at Nu Teras, when I entered the venue at around 8 or 8.30, although it was indicated that loud music would start after 9, the music was already too loud. As you know, Istanbul is a city with a huge traffic and, many people like me, have to travel long distances to reach these venues. So setting 9 o'clock as the starting point for loud music means that that event is actually a party event and not a coctail event. Furthermore, at the venue the lighting was too low in addition to the loud music and there was a huge, uncomfortable crown which made it impossible to move. Even dancing was not a pleasure with that crowd. I must say that I was very happy to see many of my friends and even enjoyed the evening but it was not at all easy to talk - let alone meeting new people. So it was like having a nice time in very unfavorable conditions.
After this uncomfortable and tiring state of the event, I started questioning myself on whether it was worth for me to stick to my dedication to keep attending to monthly events or not and whether I really took pleasurable out of them or not. My replies were no.
If however, this event were a coctail party in an exclusive 5 start hotel - like it used to be before- my reply would definitaley be a "yes". I would have ample opportunity to see and talk to numerous friends, meet new people and even plan on participating other IN events and parties together. I would feel more connected.
I am also sorry to observe, that many interesting IN members that I know, mostly men and women with more serious businesses, and with ages that are above Protected content longer come to our monthly events as they no longer find crowded, uncomfortable, loud parties appealing. I must confess, I have a similar tendency too.
In light of this, I kindly request the Ambassadors of Turkey and the headquarters in Germany to question the objectives and the mission of month IN events and ask themselves whether monthly events have the aim of creating an opportunity for the members to party together or is it more of creating an opportunity for members to connect, to get a sense of belonging and desire to be more involved or not.
This point being made, I would like to propose you to organise monthly IN events, in the form of coctails with loud-er music, starting not before 11 pm, at venues that are more comfortable and suitable for coctails. If such a shift is not possible and desirable, then you may as well consider organising two events each month one being a coctail party and the other a disco type of event so that none of the members feel excluded. Istanbul is wide enough to handle two seperate monthly events each month.
Thank you very much and, if you managed to read up to the end of this evaluation, congradulations to you a lot :-))