If you are assigned the task of planning a corporate function, the moment you start thinking of about all the different things you have to organise, it may start to bring on an anxiety attack with the overwhelming, nitty-gritty details of what a corporate event really entails.
But remember, corporate events occur every day, and are more often than not, very successful functions. Here are some expert tips that will make your corporate event perfect, streamlined and headache-free:
The first thing you need to set up and arrange is the budget, which you need to ensure is well-established before you decide on any other factors. Also, it is important to take into account that budgets tend to spill over. So remember to try to stretch the budget as best as you can, and if you are under, then everyone will be happy.
The date is more important than you think. Firstly, setting the date makes it more real to you, the planner, and gives you the impetus upon which to get the ball rolling and end all procrastination. It will drive you to have deadlines met and appointments with venues and caterers. Secondly, your date should not clash with holidays or major company events. Also, make it a weekday so that guests will not feel they have to forfeit their weekend. Potentially Thursday is a good idea, because Fridays are usually slightly more relaxed in most offices.
Decide on what type of corporate event this will be. Will it be more of a formal sit-down dinner, or a casual cocktail party? By knowing what will occur during the event, you will better understand which place to select. Also, if this event is held in winter, then it’s best to consider a venue indoors. If there will be lengthy speeches or ceremonial awards, you need to find a place that has a stage or if it doesn’t, you’ll probably need to source one. The type of event will also dictate the dress code and the general atmosphere you will need to create.
Today, email invitations are generally acceptable; but depending on the type of corporate event you have in mind, official invitations may be more suitable. Many companies prefer this sort of formal attention, and use the opportunity to add to their brand image. Also, people are still more appreciative of a nicely-made invitation, which makes it more personal and holds a higher chance of RSVP than emails, mainly because people treat the hardcopy with more reverence than a mere invitation in their inbox. What you will have to do is factor this in your budget.
People are, by nature, very picky. If the food is unsatisfactory or, more importantly, if it is under-catered, it can have huge negative impacts on the perception people have of the hosting company. It is recommended that you invest in high-quality food and offer beverages that cater to the event specifically. Remember that offering food at an event must comprise all the various specifications people may require, which include gluten-free products, vegetarian, Halal or Kosher, and other dietary requirements.
The entertainment is of the utmost importance. If it is a serious event, such as a charitable cause raising money for an illness, then hiring a band to play hip-hop music is probably a bit unacceptable. Perhaps a more docile offering may be best, such as a harp-player or a band of expansive repertoire. A DJ is usually the best pick for most corporate events since they offer an array of music. Other entertainment, besides music, must also be considered. Would a professional dance show be a good idea, for example, or a comedian?
There are always other things event planners may forget when being caught up in the drama of scheduling, planning and running around. It is best to sit down with a paper and pen and consider other smaller things that the event itself will require. Here are a few examples to get you going.
- Take-away bags with company branding products
- Name placements
- Parking or valets
- Waiters/waitresses and bar staff
- First-aid on standby in the case of an accident
Planning an event can be stressful, but remember that if you calmly approach the corporate function with a clear head and have all your ducks in a row, it can really be the perfect event.