When you’re in charge of organising a corporate event for your business, it can feel pretty daunting to make sure you’re getting everything right. There’s a huge amount of stuff to make sure you’re planning for, not to mention accommodating all the people you know will be coming (and improvising solutions to problems you hadn’t even anticipated). In these cases, it helps to have a checklist to refer to. Here’s our list of things you need to remember when you want to put on the perfect corporate event.
What’s the point of your corporate event? Are you trying to buoy the shareholders, celebrate a company achievement, or build team strength? Whatever your event is for, you need to establish your goals early on and make sure they’re shot through every subsequent stage of your planning. If you find yourself scheduling parts of the event that don’t reflect its overall goal, go back and change your plan. The objective is, in some ways, the most important part of your event.
So many corporate events get shut down because of inadequate gear that it’s a wonder this isn’t a higher priority on event planners’ lists. The importance of securing high-quality equipment for your event is impossible to overstate. One of the most crucial areas you need to get right is audiovisual equipment. If people can’t hear you or see your presentation, your event won’t go well. For great PA options, check out Astounded – you’ll be glad you didn’t skimp on costs for this pivotal aspect.
Have you managed to create a realistic and accurate budget for your event? Set down everything that you think will cost your company money and make sure you include a genuine estimate of what you think each item will cost. Without an accurate estimate, your company won’t be able to allocate the correct funds and your event will fall apart. Your budget is completely essential, so don’t get lazy when creating it; you’ll soon find your event won’t look the way it did in your head.
Although the timeline of your event is naturally subject to change – people make mistakes, after all, and things don’t always go according to plan – it’s still a good idea to create one. Having an idea of when things will happen makes it possible to slot your event together; without a timeline, you won’t know when things can or should happen. To create a timeline, you’ll need to know how long everything in your event will last, including setup time and execution time.
It’s possible to call every part of your event “the most important aspect”, but the venue is the arguable cornerstone of the whole planning process. Book your venue well ahead of time, making sure to visit the place as well so you get a feel for how you’re going to organise everything. Confer with your fellow planners (if you have any) and narrow down venues; don’t simply choose the first one you come across. If the venue is inadequate in any way, that’s going to reflect poorly on your event and company.
If your event is an internal corporate one, you don’t need to worry quite as much about speakers, since management personnel will likely want to be the ones to deliver keynote addresses. If, however, your event is motivational or incorporates advice or strategy, then you need to think about who you’re going to book as a speaker. Your booking needs to accurately reflect your corporate branding, keep your audience engaged, and deliver relevant and motivational content.
Only you will know whether or not your corporate event requires entertainment, but if you’re trying to put even a remotely positive spin on the content of the event then entertainment is a must. Remember to keep things appropriate for your event’s tone; it might not be a good idea to book a raucous metal band if your shareholders and corporate personnel aren’t into it. Take the mood of your business and plan your entertainment accordingly. If they’re on-site, make sure they’ve got the right equipment and space to perform.
Holding the corporate event is all well and good, but if you’re not successfully promoting it then nobody will know it’s happening. It’s important to make sure you put the word out, whether via social media, email chains, or simple word of mouth. If your event has a closed clientele, then you don’t need to work so hard on promotion, but if you’re looking to attract outside interest then you need to work just as hard on this aspect of your event as on everything else.
The finishing touches
Once you’ve laid out everything just the way you want it, it’s time to dot the Is and cross the Ts. Things like making sure the WiFi works for your guests, adjusting the visual elements so they’re note-perfect, and finalizing programs and catering (if you’re offering it) are all part of the process of making sure the event not only goes off without a hitch but is also polished and presentable. Your event needs to be unforgettable in a good way, and the way to achieve that is to make sure every single minor element is in place.