The responsibility of organising training days, office events, drink nights, and meetings can be incredibly difficult, especially when it's left in the hands of a single person. Organising and planning any type of event requires a lot of preparation, effort, and time, all of which become maximised when planning for a large company. Fortunately, there are several tips you can follow to make office event planning easy.
Create a Google Calendar to Coordinate Events
With so much going on, it can be difficult to keep up with everything. From board meetings to budget planning to finishing your daily duties, planning an event requires much organisation, and this organisation runs even deeper when planning multiple events.
To help ensure everyone is on the same page regarding the events, you can use Google Calendars. Not only does it allow you to share event dates with everyone involved in the event, but it also automatically updates changes across everyone's calendars when you have to alter a date for a meeting or activity. Since changes are very common when planning an event, you will want to send a memo to everyone to check their Google Calendar daily for changes. This enables you to rest assured everyone is made aware of the changes without you having to send out individual updates.
Create and Use Checklists for Each Event
To say you're going to plan an event without the use of a checklist is, by far, the biggest mistake you can make. Having a checklist on you at all times will not only allow you to check off things you have accomplished but it keeps your memory fresh regarding the things you still need to do. And since no two events are exactly the same, you will need to customise a checklist for each event you are preparing. If you have previous experience with a certain type of event, use your checklist from that event to plan any future ones; this will ensure you don't overlook anything. You can also use a checklist you find online. Ideally, a general checklist will look something as follows, but remember, it needs to be tailored to the exact event you are preparing:
- Determine goals and objectives for the event
- Choose a date
- Check out various venues and choose one
- Create a master plan, including cost estimates
- Build an event committee
- Secure sponsors
- Send out invitations requesting an RSVP
- Continue preparing for the event, such as selecting speakers
- Promote the event using various platforms like social media
- Contact caterers and video/audio service providers
- Set up for the event
- Host the event
- Send out thank you notes to those who attended, and ask for feedback
Start Planning Early
It's never too early to start planning for an event. Once it is confirmed the event is going to be hosted, you need to start planning. The larger the event, the more time it is going to take to properly plan for it. Even small events can take months. Large ones tend to take 12-18 months, with some taking multiple years to plan for. One of the most important parts of planning early is to secure vendor contracts and stay in contact with the vendors to ensure they are up to date with the latest event information. Also, when planning, it's good to look back over your past events and pinpoint the vendors and caterers you were pleased with. You can reach out to these companies again and ask for their services.
Don't Be Afraid to Ask for Help
You can never have too many helping for an event. The more people you have to help you, the easier it is to keep everything organised. And while you may find you have to pay some people for their assistance in helping plan the event, such as a professional event planner, you will also find there are plenty of people who are willing to pitch in and volunteer their time to help. You can be the best office manager or assistant, but planning an event requires multiple people, and most importantly, it requires clear communication between everyone involved. Establishing clear lines of communication from the get-go is one of the smartest moves you can make when it comes to event planning. In the least, you will want the following lines of communication to be open between everyone:
- Postal address so mail communication can take place
- Video conferencing
From early planning to using checklists to using Google Calendars, all of the tips mentioned above are great starting points for making sure your next big event is a success.
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