Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Biggest Event Planning Fears...And How to Face Them

Hosting a company event is a great way to meet new people, get the word out about your business and just have fun. If you're the organizer, however, it can be intimidating.

Read below for some ideas on dealing with some of the biggest event planning fears so you and your guests can concentrate on having fun:
  1. No one will attend. Here, the most important thing is to promote your event like crazy in your store (if you have one) and on your website, blog and social media networks. Additionally, local media usually have calendar or community events sections that you can submit your event to. A few other ideas include creating an online event marketing page, making a Twitter #hashtag and encouraging people to tweet about it and using an e-mail marketing campaign.
  2. People aren't mingling. Although name tags aren't the most fun thing (particularly if you forget you have it on hours after an event), they're very helpful in getting people to mingle with each other. To get people talking, try including a surprising bit of information. Additionally, put the food, drinks and seating in different areas -- this will encourage people to move around the room. 
  3. People leave early, or they won't leave. Organization is very important for any event; everything needs to be set up and prepared before the early birds get there. If you have scheduled things that will take place during the event, pass out printed programs so people will know the timeline. Also, create a "soft" end time for the event. As that time gets closer, politely remind attendees that the event is about to conclude, but don't be too strict on the exact time. Most people won't hang around.
  4. Uninvited party crashers arrive. Inevitably, you'll have a couple of unwanted guests, whether it's your competition, former employees or even your ex. You've heard the saying, "If you can't beat them, join them," right? Well, the same applies here. Surprise them by saying "hello" first. Hopefully, any issues they have will be discussed with you in private, not with everyone else.
  5. Someone has had too much to drink. How do you handle this? Begin with the bartender(s) and have them limit the amount of drinks given to any one person and to offer coffee, water or juice as an alternative. If someone has been over served, call him/her a cab or ride home.
Although you might try to plan for everything, an event rarely goes perfectly. So, if something you weren't expecting does happen, stay calm, and get your employees to help. Know that you did the best you could, and everyone else will know as well.

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