Putting on an event of any size is a large undertaking for even a seasoned professional. After all, entire firms and agencies exist to assist with event management. It can be a lot for one person or for a small team, but often this is who is tasked with the job. These pieces of advice for simplifying the process can be helpful and relieve associated stress with event planning and management.
Look at the Big Picture
It’s easy to put blinders on and focus on just the immediate tasks when organizing an event. However, this can be harmful to the overall success (and the stress level of the organizer!). Why? Because usually most elements of event planning and management are related to each other. This means that the success or failure of one task can impact the final outcome.
Before tackling one task, make sure there is a strong outline and strategy for organizing the event. Even a small event with 50 attendees requires a lot of planning. Start from the end result – the event itself – and work backwards, marking out milestones that need to be reached by certain deadlines.
For example, if an event needs to have $20,000 worth of sponsorships in order to break even, work backwards from that number to identify potential sponsors to approach and outline what exposure they will receive in exchange for their support. Don’t just go cold-calling companies asking for funds with no plan for how those funds will be used.
And beware of getting stuck working on tasks that are time consuming with little return. Getting tunnel vision and honing in on the font of the event program can be a big waste of time and just a distraction from other, more pressing tasks.
Make a list ahead of time of what needs to be accomplished, and prioritize accordingly. This can keep the organizer on track and help them to remember the bigger picture.
Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate
Many event organizers have trouble delegating tasks. After all, those college group projects were pretty traumatizing when no one could be counted on to complete their part. However, having a solid team that can handle delegation is vital to the success of any event.
And it’s also important to play to the team’s strengths. If one person excels are data organization and is an Excel whiz, put them to work keeping track of attendees and sponsors. This data is vital for research and marketing, so it’s important to have someone in charge who knows how to be organized.
During the event planning and management process, it’s also important to ensure that each team member knows what they are responsible for. For example, if a budget has been set ahead of time but is not communicated to the team, there is a risk of going far over the budget and causing problems.
This goes back to the concept of planning ahead and keeping an eye on the bigger picture. Delegating tasks to team members is important and keeps the whole machine running and moving towards the end result, and communicating important information is vital to keep everyone on track.
By streamlining the process of event planning and event management, organizers will feel less stressed and more capable of creating a memorable event. It’s important to remember not to get tunnel vision when working on event organization, which is why proper communication and delegation are a vital component of success.