In today’s business environment, events are one of the most effective ways of gathering and communicating with stakeholders, to include clients, service providers, staff & colleagues, competitors and industry peers.
This increasing importance put on events has given rise to the event management discipline. Rob Hard (2017) defines event management as “the process of using business management and organisational skills to envision, plan and execute social and business events”, while Steve John-N (2015) defines it as “the process of applying necessary professional skills to envision, plan and execute social and business event”. Consequently, successful event management requires input from different areas including venue and catering, décor, audio visual equipment, invitation and rsvp process, etc.
To host a successful event requires paying attention to:
- Define Event Objectives - clearly defining your objectives before any activity is done. This includes the purpose of the event, which must connect to the envisaged attendees and event outcome. Included in are size of the venue, event budget, who should attend and strategies to be deployed throughout the event such as topics, possible speakers, etc.
- Advertise the Event - Create a buzz about the event to get potential attendees excited about attending the event. This buzz can be generated by giving your target audience teasers of topics and or activities they can expect at your event - what they simply cannot afford to miss. Also make the event exciting and “a place to be” such that potential attendees will do everything to be part of the event.
- Timing - the timing of the event plays a pivotal role in its success, since every element of the event requires extensive project management planning. A great deal of research needs to be done in order to ensure that the event dates do not conflict with another industry event that could compete for the same clientele.
- Brand the Event - invitations need to carry the brand of the event right at the beginning, making it critical for a well thought through Event Brand. The look and feel of the invitations should be part and consistent with its buzz – event advertising. When people accept the invitation, it is important to have an effective way of keeping track of them, possibly engaged. Plan out the pre-registration process, which for larger events can be web-based.
- Dry Run – to ensure your team is on par and that everything is in place for the event to run smoothly, it is critical to do a dry run. Where, possible, a dummy dry run can be done at the planning stage to ensure that everything has been thought through, this helps to avoid last minute rushes.
- Risk Management - no matter how well planned at event it, disaster can creep in. A way to handle risk in events is to ensure that you have procedures at hand to deal with them. E.g. Having a contingency plan for a speaker not showing up.
The success of any event depends on how well the goals that were identified in the beginning have been achieved. This can be measured by conducting questionnaires or email survey at the event.
For more information, please consult our OneLife Team - your number one preferred event management specialists on +260 211 256 278 or email firstname.lastname@example.org