Over the last few weeks, I’ve been writing a series of blogs on events, well more specifically how assistants can organise and run great events within the context of their role. I wanted to give you a quick round-up of the issues discussed and some additional tips that I think you will find useful when running your events.
Here are the links to my previous blogs:
- How to negotiate when planning an event
- Site visit and other venue considerations
- Event Schedules and Speakers
- Joining instructions for company events
- 20 do’s and don’ts for team building events
I’ve covered quite a few subjects related to organising events, but there are a few extra tips I’d like to share that I think you will find handy…
- Do think about using unique and different venues, such as car showrooms for drink receptions, football clubs for conferences, or museums for small meetings.
- Sometimes it is worth looking outside of London (or any major city) for venues, even if some people have to travel it could save lots on the overall budget.
- Using a venue finding agency can be a real time saver and does allow you to get on with other aspects of the project.
- Understanding the delegate’s perceptive is critical. What they need from the event and their objectives should be understood from the outset, and the event itself should be the evidence of that. The best way of doing this is to have a ‘walk through before the event; this involves literally walking around the venue thinking about what can go wrong and putting into place any contingencies in case the worst thing happens.
- Try to have a memorable aspect of the event. It could be the venue, the presentations or the networking elements. Events should be seen as experiences so don’t always stick to the tried and tested.
- Do give yourself plenty of time to plan an event. If you are asked to work on an event without much lead time, your mantra should be”great events don’t just happen”. If the planning phase is short ensure you have lots of colleagues to help.
- Make sure you are fully prepared on the day of the event regarding any health and safety questions you might be asked. Check with the venue when their fire alarm test is.
- Do check whether your event will clash with other events that will market to the same audience. Even if you are arranging an in-house event do check everyone’s diaries.
- In selecting a venue do investigate the catering before you confirm anything as you may not always get the quality you were expecting!
- Try to have a grasp of the technology that will be used during the event. Talk to the venue about everything that is included in the room hire. If you have a technician on hand, do have a chat with them and understand what their role is and what they can help with. The last thing you want is to have malfunctioning equipment and not knowing how to fix it or who should fix it!
- Keep smiling on the day of the event! If you look stressed and are rushing around looking flustered, the delegates are going to see this and think the event hasn’t been organised well.
- Event budgeting is a major MAJOR factor in organising any event. Here is a great piece on event budgeting.
Finally, if you do create a lot of events as part of your role do think about adding some blogs and LinkedIn Groups to your usual assistant resources. On Twitter follow the #Eventprofs hashtag and a good group on LinkedIn is Making Good Organisers Great.