Planning an event of any kind is one of the hardest things to do. Wither it be big or small, it can be a real challenge. We’ve connected with a few professionals to give you 15 of the best events planning tips.
Tip #1 Plan. It never hurts to be over prepared and give yourself enough time for mistakes. For example, sourcing a venue, should be #1 on your list. Often, venues fall short or changes in space are required for various reasons.
Tip #2 Set a very strict budget, with a 10% inflation to make sure that you have extra cash for unexpected expenses. You can always be sure that there will be some unexpected extra expenses.
Tip #3 If you have contracts, agreements, lists, or seating charts, make sure you keep extra copies of them in case they are misplaced or lost. Have a hard copy, a copy on Google Drive, a copy on a flash disk and send them to your email. It never hurts to be extra cautious.
Tip #4 Send out your invitations at least 3 to 4 weeks ahead of your event. In addition, make sure that you ask your guests to RSVP so that you know how many people will be attending. – It never hurts to send a follow-up reminder of your event and remind people to RSVP if they already haven’t.
Tip #5 If you are creating a seating chart for your event, you can either set it up completely randomly or work with someone else in your company to come up with the best possible scenario.
Tip #6 For a good turnout, it is a good idea to schedule your event early in the week or a long way away from any major holidays. Most people plan their vacations and weekend excursions well in advanced, so it’s a good idea to choose a day that’s not so busy. However, if you do choose a weekend or around a holiday, let people know well in advance and indicate it will be worth their weekend!
Tip #7 It is important to know when to use a theme and when not to use a theme. Themes can be fun, but it depends on the environment, client and workplace atmosphere. Some corporate events have a theme, but then again, it depends what type of corporate function you are throwing.
Tip #8 Music is always a must. It sets the mood and gives people something to dance to. Try to choose a good DJ with a good mix. Keep the music, light and neutral.
Tip #9 Always make a list of the tech equipment you may need. Check with the venue to see what they have this will help you figure out what you may need to bring in. Also, if you’re bringing in tech equipment, make sure you have someone who is technologically savvy and can fix something if It breaks down.
Tip #10 When you are planning an event, especially a large event, make emergency and contingency plans in case of disaster, illness, or any other emergency. THIS IS A MUST!
Tip #11 It is important to consider all special accommodations for people with disabilities or special needs. Your invitation is a good time to point out if people have any dietary or special needs request, to let you know upon their RSVP. This way you can track who may need what and act accordingly. However, it is always best to find a venue that caters to special needs as a safe guard. Nowadays, most venues are required to have access ability ramps and protocols.
Tip #12 If you are planning a very large event, you might want to take a project management approach to it. Use a master plan, and delegate tasks to others where you reasonably can. Or use a Critical Path solution.
Tip #13 Any event longer than two hours requires light snacks. If your event is longer than four house a meal / dinner is required. You’re expecting your guest’s undivided attention, so you should feed their attention. You don’t want your guests complaining of hunger, leaving to get food or passing out from starvation.
Tip #14 Communication is a major key to the success of an event. If you are using vendors, make sure they have very clear and specific instructions of what you are expecting of them.
Tip #15 Whenever you plan an event, make sure you take things like transportation, parking, etc… into the equation. The last thing you want is for your guests to have to walk a long way to the event or to go home because they couldn’t find a place to park. Check out the area, see what’s happening. Is there construction, will this area be closed by the time of your event? All those things play a major role in the success of your event.