Event planning can be very stressful. Avoid these common mistakes to ensure a successful event.
1. Not Starting Early Enough
Due to COVID, there is pent-up demand for live events. If you are looking to host an event in the next one to two years, there is already a chance that you might not get your preferred date and venue.
According to Northstar Meetings Group, 96% of meeting planners will host an in-person event in 2022, with only 4% waiting until 2023. Start planning now!
2. Not Focusing on the Event Goals and Objectives
You are hosting a program for a reason. Keep this in mind while planning the event. If you are hosting a team building event where you want everyone to get to know each other, add in some time for organic conversations. Don't have everyone sit at their own tables where they can't communicate with one another.
3. Not Using Your Resources
Ask the experts! Ask as many questions as you want throughout the planning process. Professionals out there want to help you fully understand everything you are agreeing to when you sign your name on the dotted line. We want you to have realistic expectations for what will work operationally and how certain ideas could be executed better.
4. Not Having a Budget (or at least a realistic one)
Food prices have increased drastically and are still on the rise since the pandemic began. Many hospitality employees were out of work for over a year. Make sure you are accounting for these increased costs when planning your budget. Pricing that you saw in 2019 is likely not the same pricing that you will see in 2022 and 2023.
5. Not Reading Your Contract
There are clauses in contracts to protect you and the vendor. Thoroughly read every line of the contract, so you are not surprised by anything later.
6. Not Planning Set Up and Break Down Time
Do you need to set up any posters, signs, table materials? How about doing a practice run through for any audio visual equipment? Do you have vendors setting up or breaking down tradeshow booths? This takes time! Discuss with the venue ahead of time to make sure staff is scheduled and lights are on during before and after event times. You wouldn't want to show up and have another event still taking place. No one wants to be surprised on the day of.
7. Not Getting Everything in Writing
Banquet Event Orders are the most important pieces of paper when working with event venues and vendors. Plans change all the time, document everything! During the planning process, have all parties sign off on crucial details to confirm that everyone is on the same page and is ready to execute the final plan.
We are here to help bring your vision to life! Happy planning!
Written by: Jen Wingate, Association and Non-Profit Account Executive