Imagine this: you are in charge of planning a corporate event and you realize on the day that the event location you’ve chosen is under construction. No one at the location informed you that your event had been canceled.
You scramble last minute to find a replacement location and to inform everyone attending of the change. Some people don’t get the information in time and end up at the previous location, much to their annoyance and chagrin.
These kinds of corporate event hosting mistakes aren’t common, but they do happen. It can be enough to put you off planning and hosting events for life. That’s why we have created this list of event hosting mistakes below, so you can be prepared the next time around.
1. Not Accounting for Your Audience’s Interests
Too many event planners don’t take into account their audience’s tastes or preferences when creating an event. Unless you are planning your wedding or baby shower, you will need to ensure you build an event based on what your audience would like to do, rather than what you would prefer.
For instance, you are going to have a completely different event set up if you are hosting events for CEOs of multinational companies, as opposed to when you host an event for millennial professionals at a tech company.
2. Not Having a Good Onsite Experience
Think about how your event is set up onsite, by doing a walk-through of the space, and seeing how it feels to you. Does it feel too crowded or is it spaced out evenly and fairly?
Also, think about the location of the washrooms, to ensure that there are enough available and that they aren’t located far away from the main event hall and in a precarious or dark location.
Finally, think about the food setup. Make it so it’s easy for people to move in and out and to get their food efficiently. The longer people have to wait for their meal, the more frustrated and ‘hangry’ they’re going to get.
3. Not Communicating the Event Details Coherently
Humans are forgetful creatures. They need constant reminders of things, especially when it comes to a corporate event or something that’s a one-off in their calendar.
Make sure to communicate all event details several days in advance and several times before the event, up to the very day it’s scheduled. Also, ensure that you follow up by phone or email to ensure that the attendees are aware of any changes in location or time, so they don’t end up going to the wrong place or at the wrong time.
4. Not Giving Enough Time for Set-Up
Murphy’s law says that every project ends up costing twice as much as budgeted and takes twice as long. That’s why ensure that you give yourself enough time to set up for the event, even if it means going in a few hours early or sending your assistant or team in a few hours early.
It’s better to be set up and ready to go an hour in advance than still be scrambling to set up while your guests start trickling in.
5. Not Having a Big Enough Budget Allocated
Corporate events are big business, and thus, despite all your efforts, they might end up being more expensive than you expect. There are so many different aspects of it to take care of – floral arrangements or other decoration pieces, catering staff, photographers, videographers, and more.
Always account for unexpected budget items popping up, so that you are prepared for all eventualities.
6. Not Having a Backup Plan
Contingency planning is the name of the game when it comes to event hosting. No matter how much you prepare for an event, items will still fall through the gap. You can’t prepare for everything.
That’s why having a backup plan for the most important items is a great way to assuage this gap. For example, have the name of a backup caterer or ensure that you have a second location in mind, in case the first choice falls through last minute.
7. Not Thinking about Competing Holidays or Events
If you are hosting an event in a country you are not familiar with, have someone on your team who is familiar with the country’s customs and festivals. You don’t want to set up a major corporate event on a day that’s sacred or holy to the country’s residents. Or set up a festival on a day that’s considered to be a day of mourning or more somber.
8. Not Using a Detailed Packing List
Whenever you are doing off-site events, then ensure that you have a packing list to check off against, so you don’t forget anything behind. Of course, you can always purchase some of these items or send someone back to the office to grab them. But that’s time-consuming, and it’s much more efficient not to have to resort to such dire means.
9. Not Doing Any Followup after Your Corporate Event
Always do some kind of follow-up with your event attendees a few days after the event. Not only do you want to know if the event was a success, but you would also want feedback on how to improve the event next time around.
A simple survey can be included along with the email and letter. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant.
You Are Now Ready to Build the Event of a Lifetime
With these event hosting tips in mind, you are now ready to go forth and start hosting events galore. Still looking for a grand location to hold your event in? Consider the Midlothian Conference Center – it has been host to a wide array of events and even has an onsite hotel for all your out-of-city guests.
Contact the sales team today to request a proposal for your particular event or to schedule a tour of the facility. The perfect corporate event awaits you.