Published on January 28th, 2018 | by Howard Bell0
10 Event Management Tips
Any type of event planning is very stressful, even more so if this is the first time you are tackling such a task. In truth, it can be overwhelming even for people in the event management business. Depending on the type of event you are planning, and the number of people that are to be invited, you will need a certain amount of time to prepare. There will be many smaller tasks you need to handle, as well as many different people to work with, so needless to say, it will not be easy.
If you are taking your event abroad, to Prague more specifically, then you will be faced with even more of a challenge. It is one thing to plan in your own home town, and another to take your show on the road, so to say. To avoid the additional stress and ensure that things run smoothly, hire a DMC company to do the job for you. Prague Eventery would be our choice – they can set you up with the event of your dreams.
If you are tackling the event on your own, here are ten tips to help you out:
1. Start planning on time
Knowing when to start planning can be difficult, but the general rule of thumb is six months in advance if you are hosting a large event, and at least two if the event is something smaller. Don’t ever leave things to the very last moment. You will have trouble finding a venue, your guests will already have booked other engagements, and you options will be very much limited. You should also make sure that all contracts are signed and everything at the venue is agreed upon at least three week before the day.
2. Flexibility is important
Chances are, things will not go as planned. Times will get changed, locations can be changed, your speakers can cancel. The important thing is to stay calm, and remain flexible. Never start to panic, just think of ways you can work with what you have. The event does not need to go down precisely like you planned it, you can keep it going even with the alterations.
This is particularly true when it comes to vendors. You can negotiate prices, even when they tell you otherwise. There will be costs along the line you could not predicts, which is why you should try to negotiate most prices. Set a budget before every meeting, and never open with that figure. Never spend more than you can, even if you feel you can cut corners later.
You will not be able to handle everything yourself. You simply won’t. You need to break up the event into smaller chunks, like catering, venue, entertainment, invitations, guest list, and so on, and assign each to a different person. That way, someone will have the time to go into extreme detail about everything, and that someone will not get overwhelmed. Make sure all of your team members are always aware of all the key facts, so as not to cause any confusion.
You will need to find a way for all of you to work together well. Create a folder on Google Drive where every detail will be available, and make sure everyone is updating it on a daily basis. This is where you can keep all the contact information, and the seating arrangements, the invitation mockups, and so on. Everyone should know where they can find a certain piece of information, without having to call the person in charge of that particular part of the event.
6. Have a backup plan
It is important to have a backup plan, just in case something does go wrong. Something may not be delivered on time, an important guest may be delayed, the weather will change, etc. While you are still planning, make sure to identify the key parts of the event, and a backup for each. That way, you will be prepared even if the worst happens. Have a backup speaker if need be, and make sure you also have backups ready for yourselves too. If one of the members of your organizing team does not show up, someone needs to be able to jump in on the day of.
7. Do a test run
About two weeks before the event, you should do a test run of the entire thing. Have a meeting and go through every single detail, down to the very very smallest ones. This includes the aftermath and the disassembly of everything. This is where you will see what can go wrong, and you can still fix it. You should also do a test run at the venue itself, at least two days before the event, and make sure nothing is being left out on the spot.
8. Take plenty of photos
You need to take as many pics of the event as you can. If you are not hiring a pro to do it for you, make sure the team takes pictures every step of the way, or even have one of them do it the entire time. This will allow you to showcase your success at a later time, and use the material for marketing purposes. Make sure you take some photos with all of you as well.
9. Market it
You need to make sure people know about your event. Social media is great for this, especially Facebook. Make sure you invite all the guests who are coming, and tag them in the photos. You can do a live cover of the event, if you have the manpower, and boost engagement even further.
10. Follow up
This is a very important point, yet many forget about it. After the event, you need to reach out to your guests and thank them for being there, and send them thank you notes. You can even send them some photos. Have a meeting with the team and thank each of them for the part they have played. Make sure you also go over the things you can improve for your next event.