Neil Bromage has run his own small business and is a freelance business writer working on a range of newspapers including The Times, Sunday Times, Telegraph and Financial Mail on Sunday. This book is based on a wide range of columns and Q&As written and answered by Neil for Business Link over a number of years. He is based near Preston, Lancs.
Whatever type of business you’re in it’s likely that at some time you will have to plan an event. But it would be easy to think that event management is only about organising large gatherings. However, whether the event is large or small, exciting or mundane, it has to be planned if it is to be successful.
Almost every business, regardless of its size, has to plan an event at some point in its life. It may be the initial opening of the business or of a new office, a new promotion or launching a new product, a training session or an exhibition. It could even be the monthly meeting of senior management. All of these events and many others require effective planning if they are to be successful.
Good event management is like salt in your soup – you only notice it when it isn’t there! So the number one rule has to be attention to detail. A pre-event brainstorming session to make detailed lists of what needs to be done, when and by whom will pay dividends. It will also help you to identify and be clear about your objectives. Clearly identified objectives are much easier to measure against results after the event.
- Brief staff thoroughly on your objectives.
- Have pre-prepared forms for recording customer contact – they will be very impressed to receive your response on return to their office.
- Staff breaks are important if they are to perform at their best – give them quality time away from the event.
- Don’t be tempted to leave an event early, even if it’s quiet a new customer could be just around the corner.
- Make sure you use good quality display material.
- Promote the event well with direct marketing and personal selling.
On a personal note, remember that you may well be on your feet all day, so wear a comfortable pair of shoes -breaking in a new pair at an event is not a good idea.