Holding a successful business event take months of planning and persistence. Your diligence in helping this process go off without a hitch doesn’t stop when you find the perfect venue for your event. You need to work with event planners and vendors to ensure every portion of the day goes as smoothly as possible. Here are some common mistakes many people make when planning a business event at a hotel.
Skipping the Event Manager
Also called an event planner, an event manager is like having a mom: she handles all the details, makes sure all parties involved work well together, and smooths any discrepancies or disputes. Likewise, an event manager can ensure your network of resources is working together to ensure everything from the DJ to the caterers are all on the same page. Same goes for coordinating the details, such as linens, banquet tables, flowers, decorations, name tags and audio-visual equipment. Failure to work in tandem with an event manager at your hotel of choice can have disastrous consequences, from budgeting problems to inadequate rooms.
Underestimating the Guest Count
Obtaining an accurate number for guests who plan to attend your event is crucial. Underestimate and your venue will be entirely too small to fit all the attendees comfortably, possibly even leading to fire code violations that could shut down your event. Overestimating your guest count could lead to wasted space, and therefore, money on a room that’s far too large for your needs. Be sure to advise invited guests to RSVP by a certain date. If you don’t hear back from a few, call them to get a firm answer. You will always have no-shows or those who come by at the last minute, but having a solid number from which to work will save you headaches later.
Having No Backup Plan
Failing to instill a backup plan is like leaping out of an airplane without testing the parachute first. You assume it’s going to work, but do you really want to take that chance? It’s a given that things will go wrong, often without notice, so it’s important to have a Plan B to rely on when things don’t go as planned. AV equipment can go on the fritz right before a big presentation, the air conditioning may need repair or the caterers don’t show up on time. Whatever the issue is, have a contingency plan set up so you can keep a cool head.
There are some things you can do to stay on top of business event planning mistakes before they happen. When keeping track of changes to your event, employ a change tracking process to effectively keep small tweaks (such as to seating capacity or food amounts) documented and under control, advises the International Institute of Event Management. Brainstorm with your team before the event to go over possible messy problems and changes that may happen at the last minute. Develop an event risk assessment plan and work it into every planning process you use for your events to offset the risks of costly mistakes. For example, you may put a temporary fencing rental around the venue to improve the safety and security of your guests and staff, but if you plan on making that space your official place of events then consider getting something more reliable like an aluminum fencing with the help of a professional fence company.
Pulling off a smooth business event is possible provided you prepare ahead of time.