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Sunday, May 27, 2012

15 Corporate Event Management Tips: Guide to Planning and Organizing Corporate Functions

Great planning can make or break a great corporate event.
Events can grow your business or organization and bring in a lot of profits, providing a great venue to establish and develop relationships, communicate updates and news.

Proper event management is important to avoid planning pitfalls so you do not wind up with a boring event or a wasted opportunity.

Here are 15 Tips for Corporate Event Planning:

1.  Type of Event?  Is it a Holiday party, product launch, stockholder gathering, or regional meeting?  The answer to that question will affect the overall direction your event will go.  The event theme, budget, and venue will all depend on this.  Party ideas and themes will only thrive if the event is the right type.

2.  Date of Event?  When organizing events, making sure the date is perfect.  Brainstorm different potential conflicts and holidays that may clash with your event and plan around them.  Have the guests and their travel arrangements in mind so you do not inhibit people from coming by planning it at a time where people would have to battle traffic.

Contemporary Acrylic Lectern
3.  Purpose of Event?  Without having a purpose to the event, you could waste a lot of time and money for something that creates zero value.  What are your goals and objectives for this event?  Having a defined purpose to the event will help your planning team.

Having a purpose for the event is one of the Four Pillars to a great event: 
  1. Great food
  2. Great entertainment
  3. Great social time
  4. Great value in fulfilling purpose of event.
Wireless Presentation PA System
4.  Make sure you have the proper audio visual equipment.  Having equipment with professional quality and a professional look will make your event stand out in the minds of attendees.

Will your event have a Keynote Presentation? Elegant events need an elegant lectern.  AmpliVox offers several lecterns with wireless sound systems built in, allowing speakers to project their voice over the audience.

Will your event need a sound system?  Do you need to project emcee's voice or play music during your event?  Are there instruments that need to cover a large area?  The AmpliVox Digital Audio Travel Partner Package is a great option that can project to an audience of 7,500 people through a variety of inputs: up to 8 wireless microphones simultaneously, several different music inputs (iPod, CD Player), and allows musicians to plug in their instruments effortlessly.  The iPod Portable PA System is able to hook up a projector and allows users to control the built-in DVD player with the remote control.

5. Does your event need entertainment? Depending on the nature of your event, it may be beneficial to hire a musician, comedian, DJ, or a celebrity for your event.  Choosing the right entertainer will help boost attendance numbers and make the event a great memory for those who attend.

6. Are you expecting the unexpected?  Being prepared for an emergency and having a Plan B for weather is important when planning a corporate special event.

The Radio Hailer Emergency Communication System allows you to use your portable 2-way radio, base station or mobile radio to deliver live voice messages directly to a PA speaker up to 1 mile away.

7. Would signage benefit your event?  This could be a valuable branding opportunity where you could increase your exposure and even include a call to action like a text-donation if you are a non-profit, or invite guests to like your Facebook Page.  Signage and branding is one vital part of a corporate event that should be at the top of your checklist.

Automation is a planner's best friend!
8.  Automate as much as possible.  Use event planning software like EventBrite or EventPro to help you with many parts of an effective event planning process for your corporate event.

9. All hands on deck!  It is better to have too many people helping out at an event than too little.  With potentially thousands in attendance at corporate conferences, being overstaffed is to be preferred over being understaffed!

10.  Test technology beforehand to make sure it is functioning properly. Make sure all of the different systems you will be using are functioning like they should be.  Also make sure the speaker placement of the PA system broadcasts your sound in the right direction to prevent embarrassing feedback that may occur otherwise.

11.  Be wise about food.  Do you need a whole meal or just dessert?  Are you planning for certain dietary restrictions that guests may have?  Party professionals need to answer these questions and find good solutions to ensure their guests safety and enjoyment of the event.

12. Pick the right time of day.  Breakfast or lunch events are sometimes a better option than an evening event. A great example of this is the Business Breakfast Event called Social Media and the Art of Cause Marketing.

13.  Treat special guests respectfully.  If you have guests coming in to perform or give a keynote address, treat them like royalty and think through their entire schedule and how you can serve them and make their time enjoyable.  A favorable impression on the keynote speaker could pay surprising dividends in the future.

Victoria Multimedia Lectern
14. Be wise about downtime.  Avoid boring interludes.  It is a good idea to keep all corporate functions to an optimal length without a lot of downtime.  You do not want people to think your event is boring, or worse--that it is over before an important announcement or part of the evening.

Presidential Plus Podium
15.  Clarify Team Roles and Responsibilities.  It is a good idea for your team to review their specific duties before the event starts.  You do not want anything important falling through the cracks because of bad communication or a lack of understanding.

by Kevin Halloran

What did we miss?  If you have any more corporate planner party tips or suggestions and techniques for those in event services, please share in a comment!

By Kevin Halloran
Images Courtesy of Seth Lemmons, blupics
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