3 Important Lessons For Every Event Organizer
After organizing a few events now (all different sizes and types), this is something that I’ve been giving a lot of thought to lately.
Admittedly and acting as good lessons along the way, I’ve made many “mistakes” on the organizing front. To be completely honest, I’m glad I did because it allowed me to recognize these areas for improvement and taught me how to make sure these mistakes do not become subject to repetition.
Specifically there are three areas that I’ve been noticing over and over again which are common ground for any and every event that I’ve been involved with.
Here are 3 tips/lessons that every event organizer can learn from:
1 | You can never be “too prepared”
When it comes to organizing an event, there is NO such thing as being “too prepared”. Unfortunately, but also fortunately at the same time, I learned this one the hard way.
Personally I was ignorant about this one and was overly confident that we could pull of a large event in two months. Which we did, but the backend and logistics of it all were questionable at best. I found myself running around day of getting all of the little items that should have been in place two weeks prior. We were even scrambling last minute for audio and lighting, a major component to the event.
Because of all this, I didn’t make it to the venue until 2 hours before the event. It wasn’t a good look and all it did was create a more stressful and rushed environment.
The reality here and the point I’m trying to get across is that you do need to think of literally everything. You do need to have contingencies in place if (when) things don’t go as planned. And you need to have a tight operation to ensure nothing slips through the cracks.
I’ve found that running through a bunch of different scenarios once, twice or even three times (preferably) helps me when it comes to assessing my event’s needs and understanding what mechanisms need to be in place in order to succeed.
Personal tip: it might sound cliche, but record EVERYTHING in a spreadsheet. Break down all of your stakeholders, address specific roles, delegate tasks, address dependencies, create weekly checklists, and ensure accountability is there. You might need to create multiple tabs or sheets, but the important thing is to start getting items written down. If you have a team bigger than yourself, get the team to contribute and collaborate and start putting your heads together!
2 | Communication is fundamental to success
Exactly how you can never be too prepared, as an Event Organizer, you can NEVER communicate too much.
This goes for communicating with your event staff, partners, guests and anyone else who has a major stake or is involved with the event directly.
Having open, consistent and direct communication ensures that accountability is in place, that everyone is on the same page, and that major concerns or “road blocks” are being addressed.
Not to mention that people enjoy hearing updates and knowing the status of where things are at. As a co-organizer, I like to know when a certain music group has committed to playing at our event or when the venue might have rescinded an initial offer. And as an event-goer, I absolutely love hearing updates about the event, especially if it’s something that will make my experience that much more enjoyable.
The list of reasons to communicate can go on, but you get the point.
Personal tip: create a communication plan and stick to it! Within this plan include a section where all team members have access to one another’s contact information such as phone, email and any other method where they can be reached in case of an emergency.
3 | Consistency is key
One of the greatest lessons that I’ve learned from running an event (and a business) is that consistency can be the biggest champion.
It’s also consistency that will compliment your organization/preparation (point #1) and your communication (point #2).
Regardless if it’s communication with the team, communicating with current guests who have bought ticket, creating content for marketing purposes, scheduling posts for social media, etc. being consistent with all of these in extremely crucial for your event’s success.
I’ve found that being holding myself accountable to be consistent with all aspects of planning keeps me driven, motivated and even feeling more accomplished. Likely because I am being a lot more productive. It also makes it a lot easier to get into a good rhythm and stick to your schedule.
Personal tip: Again, this might sound very cliche, but it works. Start creating tasks for yourself (and your team), making sure that you record them and schedule them in your calendar. Be sure to add reminders and detailed descriptions. I would highly recommend revisiting your schedule on a weekly basis to make sure you’re meeting your quota but to also hold yourself accountable and remain on track!
Hopefully you can make good use of these three lessons for your next event to ensure success, to help you sell more tickets and more importantly to help you keep your sanity!
Until next time,
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