It doesn’t matter if your company has 10 employees or 10,000, planning corporate events on your own can be quite time-consuming and stressful, especially when you’re having to maintain your current responsibilities while doubling as an event planner. To help you be the ideal event coordinator for your company, we’ve got 10 things that’ll you certainly want to know before you start planning any corporate events.
Create an Event Planning Checklist
The worst mistake you can make when planning corporate events is to not start with a clear checklist and plan of attack. The main items you want to have on an event planning checklist include: setting a date, deciding on a budget, booking a venue, deciding on food catering, booking guest speakers, creating and sending out invitations, etc.
Know Your Budget
First and foremost, you need to set your budget. When you’re thinking about this, remember that your costs don’t just include booking the venue, catering services, decorations and any special guest speakers/ entertainment. Your budget should also consider the cost of printing any handouts, presentations, signage and purchasing awards if applicable.
Book Guests Speakers as Soon as Possible
While some corporate events may not call for a guest speaker, if yours does, you’ll want to book them as soon as possible. Make sure that you have a few options for guest speakers because you never know if your first choice will be available. A good rule of thumb is to have two to three times as many guest speakers in mind than you do slots.
Scout Multiple Venues
Even if you have your heart set on a certain venue, it’s always best practice to have several in mind. If the venue you want is on the pricier side of your budget, you may want to consider another venue. However, you could also adjust your costs elsewhere such as with guest speakers or food.
Get Quotes from Multiple Catering Companies
For the most cost-effective corporate event, you should get multiple quotes from various catering services. When looking at catering companies, you want to consider their entire catering menu and craft the meal from there. Think about the style of event you want to have, and that will help you decide on food. If it’s more of a laid-back event meant for people to have a good time, then you can never go wrong with BBQ catering!
Spread the Word Early
To ensure that everyone you invite will be able to make it, you want to send out invitations as soon as possible. Even if it’s a quick email to the whole company letting them know of the dates and telling them that an official invite with more information will come later, that’s fine. This is all about making people aware of the event.
Don’t Forget About Spouses, Families and Significant Others
If your corporate event is going to be for more than just employees and clients, you’ll want to make that very clear in the invite and make sure you get an approximate headcount. This number will be extremely important, and you should preemptively have a ballpark number in mind when booking the venue.
Consider How the Event Should Flow
Do you plan on giving out awards or having guests speakers or anything like that? If so, it’s important that you think about how you want the event to flow. It’s best to create a “Run of Show,” which outlines the event step by step. When guests will arrive, when they’ll eat, when the guest speaker will talk and so on and so forth.
Make Your Guests Feel Welcome
The last thing you want is to put in all this work just to have your guests feel awkward or not know where to go once they arrive. You should have a dedicated person or group of people who will welcome your guests and show them where to go to check in or get to their table.
Enjoy the Event