Event planners have to juggle many different tasks to put together an event that everyone will enjoy. On top of wearing multiple hats and keeping everything going, sometimes the rumors you’ve heard about planning an event just aren’t true.
Myth # 1: Everyone Needs a Tote and a Binder
Back in the 1980s and early 90s, anyone who attended an event would expect to be given a customized tote bag and a binder with handouts and information about what was going on. A lot has changed and we are now in a digital age. Instead of creating cumbersome items for people to carry around, event planners spend their time creating digital content, beautiful presentations, and coming up with unique ways to put a new spin on old stand bys.
Save your company money and time and throw out the idea of a tote bag and binder. Instead, invest those funds in an amazing speaker or some other experience that attendees can take home with them.
Myth # 2: You Can Plan an Event in Your Spare Time
Although the number of hours you put in can vary, expect to spend a minimum of 10 hours a week on event planning. You are the go-to person that everyone needs to contact. Simply responding to emails and telephone calls can eat up several hours each week.
As it gets closer to the event, expect to put in many more hours. Last minute emergencies can eat up your time, such as a caterer backing out of preparing food, a venue having a sudden emergency that requires relocating you, or workshop speakers suddenly becoming unavailable.
Myth # 3: Your Reputation Hinges on Your Last Event
While this is true to a point, because people will remember huge failures or events they didn’t enjoy, the truth is that you have to focus on the next event coming up if you really want to success at event planning. Even during a conference, you should be taking notes and figuring out things that you can do differently for the next event.
Just after an event, you should do surveys of attendees to find out what worked well, what didn’t, and what can be improved. What did attendees love and want to see again? What did they hate and never want to experience again?
Keep careful track of which vendors worked well for you and followed through on promises as well. You don’t want a repeat performance of bad service.
Keep an Eye on Changes
The event planning industry changes rapidly from year to year. In recent years, people have started to tweet during events and expect a higher level of technology from speakers. Event planning is a challenging but rewarding task. Ignore what you’ve heard, because what worked yesterday may not work today. Instead, focus on giving attendees the best experience possible and using all the tools at your disposal.
Topic you might be interested in: Re-Entry Into Normal Work Mode After the Event