By: Sheila Reed
Keeping a special event organized is paramount in running a smooth event. Planning trade shows and corporate events often involve a lot of elements including invitations, deadlines, quotes, budgets and approvals. It’s a very detailed process and if something is missed it can create a mini panic. Here are event planning tips on how to keep your event organized so the day of the event you can focus on execution.
Maintain a detailed planner with deadlines – Organize all the event deadlines in a planner. Check your planner daily to see what deadlines are approaching so you can tie up loose ends in time. Also keep track of dates anyone involved in the approval process may be out of the office and target to get those approvals before they leave.
Construct a binder to organize vendor contracts – Keep track of emails with written promises, quotes, approvals and payments tabbed in a binder. This is great to have on hand for when someone has a question about event details. This will also be a lifesaver if a vendor misses a detail. You can quickly show them what you ordered, when and who processed the request on their end and usually get the issue fixed instantly if anything happens the day of the event.
Develop vendor approved timeline for the day of the event – Make sure you know which vendor is showing up when and with what. A week or two before the event send a follow up email asking them to confirm the event details including deliveries, set up times and dismantles.
Have a point of contact for each vendor for the day of the event – Even after you have developed an approved timeline for the day of the event you may find yourself waiting. It’s important to not fall too far behind schedule. Keep a list of point of contacts for vendors for the day of events just incase you need to check in and see where they are or if something was done incorrectly make sure you can contact someone fast to fix it.
Attention to detail and lots of communication are key to trade show and event planning success. Never underestimate the power of hiring an external event coordinator to focus on the details for you, but if you pass the responsibilities on to someone internally groom for success by supplying them with a planner and organization materials and requests for vendor timelines and point of contacts.