There are countless reasons each day for people to gather for a special event. With over 2 million marriages in the United States each year and one birth every 8 seconds , the fabric of human connections are woven with birthday parties and weddings. Within the corporate world you’ll find conferences, launch parties, premieres, holiday gatherings, award ceremonies, grand openings, and incentive programs. Religious and cultural traditions celebrate baptisms, bat mitzvahs/ bar mitzvahs, and quinceaneras as some of their common coming-of-age events. No matter what type of event, each take a lot of careful planning, organizing, and attention to detail. If you recently found yourself planning any one of these events and were faced with extreme and unexpected challenges, here are four lessons to learn from those event planning mishaps:
Delegate Tasks to FEW and TRUSTED People
If you had a nickel for every well-intentioned person who offered their help only to make twice as much work for you in the end, you’d be rich! Friends and family will want to lend a hand, and though you may think that’s a great way to relieve some of your heavy load of planning, you should never have too many spoons in the pot. Be sure to delegate only to few and trusted people you know. When too many tasks are spread out, you as the event planner have a harder time keeping track of the progress and details. Pick two or three people you know to be trustworthy, responsible, and easy to work with to assist you.
Be Kind To Vendors Along The Way
From catering to furniture rentals, audio/visual techs to decor companies, you will likely find yourself working with several different vendors who will play integral parts in bringing your event to life. Event planning can be stressful, and it is in those most frustrating moments when vendors can receive the brunt of an event planner’s angst. When you need to call in some last minute favors, you’ll be glad when you’ve created a respectful working relationship with your vendors. In fact – it wouldn’t hurt to butter them up a bit! In those moments of event mishaps, you’ll want to have those vendors on your side, working with you to resolve problems quickly – and perhaps even without adding an extra line item to the bill!
Create the Event Armageddon Resolution Guide
It’s true that there will be unexpected challenges at your event – guest counts will be different than planned, it rains on a summer afternoon, or a fight breaks out between intoxicated guests. As much as those unplanned moments do happen, as an effective event planner you can plan ahead for the worst case scenario. Create an Event Armageddon Resolution Guide by writing down all of the what-if’s, and the what-to-do’s. This guide should include every possible outcome for change, emergency contacts for each of those scenarios, and a detailed summary of how to resolve that possible conflict.
Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff
You’ve been envisioning this event for weeks or months, with every detail combed over with precision and great effort. On the day of the event, many of those details will begin to come to life before your eyes, creating a feeling of pride and relief. However, for the things that don’t go as planned, consider how important that change to the event actually is. For instance, is is really that necessary to have a meltdown over steel blue napkins, rather than the midnight blue napkins you ordered? Take that up with the vendor later – but for the sake of sanity, don’t sweat the small stuff! Remember what is most important – and that is the lasting memories the guests are left with.