Corporate events are a key element in business, however making sure that everything goes smoothly isn’t always easy. Attention to detail is essential, and organisational skills are key to managing everything seamlessly.
This comprehensive guide will take you through all the stages of planning, so whether you’ve planned countless events with your team in the past or whether this is your first time, you can be confident that you’ll have covered all the bases.
Make A Timeline
Once you know that you’re going to be responsible for planning a corporate event, the first step is to come up with a clear timeline so that you know when every stage needs to be underway and completed. With a checklist in place, you’ll be able to tick off all the tasks you’ve already accomplished, and you’ll also know what still remains to be done so that nothing is accidentally left out.
No matter what type of corporate event you’re planning for your team, you’ll need to ensure that you’re operating within any budgetary restraints. Overspending on the venue, catering or materials must be avoided at all costs, so make sure you determine your overall budget first before allocating the appropriate amount of funds to every aspect of the event.
Depending on the purpose of your corporate event, you will need to plan appropriate activities to suit the needs of your team. Whether you’re arranging a formal occasion in a conference hall or whether you’re organising a team building event outside the workplace, you’ll need to ensure that all of the attendees are engaged and inspired.
If you’re arranging a formal corporate event, you might want to plan in some breakout sessions, with attendees being organised into small targeted groups in order to address issues that are meaningful to attendees on a more personal level. Planning in other interactive activities like icebreakers, workshops and guest speakers will also help to give more focus and direction to the day.
Alternatively, if you’re arranging something informal for team building purposes, you need to decide on an activity that will impress and inspire. A golf day would be one example of an excellent corporate event activity, and hiring the ClubsAway golf simulator can turn any venue into a sociable, entertaining and engaging experience for all kinds of participants.
Arranging A Venue
Depending on the type of event that you’re planning, you may need to book a venue to suit your requirements. If you event is going to be held in your own workplace, this won’t be a consideration, however if you’ll be heading off-site, you’ll need to ensure that you’ve chosen a place that can accommodate the required number of delegates, which is easy to access and which fits into your specified budget.
Arranging Food And Accommodation
Depending on your venue, you may also need to arrange refreshments and accommodation for attendees. If the event will be held in a hotel, this may often be provided by the venue itself, however in other cases, liaising with catering companies and accommodation providers may be necessary.
Buffet-style refreshments frequently work well at a corporate event as it enables attendees to choose their own preferences and to accommodate their dietary requirements. Healthy and vegetarian options should be provided and light fare is often preferable to heavy meals. Asking attendees to inform you about any specific dietary requirements well before the event will ensure that everyone is catered for.
If you’re arranging a formal corporate event with presentations and speakers, you will need to make sure that you hire a keynote speaker who can deliver a thought-provoking and motivating presentation will keep attendees engaged and enthusiastic.
There are many kinds of guest speakers to choose from, including motivational speakers, authority industry figures, published authors and celebrities, however you should rely on recommendations from others within your industry, since speakers should be able to relate to the attendees and discuss relevant issues.
Make sure that your speaker’s requirements can be met and have been arranged in advance, and don’t forget to include the costs of compensating your guest speaker and paying for their food and accommodation in your budget.
Staffing Your Event
Depending on where your event is being held, you may need to consider hiring extra staff, especially if there are exhibits to be set up and taken down. Having additional people on hand to help attendees, to arrange transportation and to replenish refreshments and beverages may be very helpful, especially if there are lots of delegates who will be attending.
Although you will already have your event checklist in place, you’ll need to draw up another shorter one for the day itself just to make sure that everything will go as planned. Some of the things you may need to remember, depending on the type of event you’re arranging include:
- Creating printed materials for distribution
- Setting up exhibits
- Making name tags for attendees
- Printing a register or list of attendees
- Obtaining any necessary insurance or permits
- Finalising place cards and seating arrangements
- Making last minute liaisons with any guest speakers
- Preparing any promotional items or gift bags
After your event, don’t forget to follow up on it to see how well it went and whether anything needs to be changed the next time you have an occasion to plan for.
Ask the attendees to complete a survey about the various elements of the event, for example the food, speakers, activities etc. Find out what they found valuable and what they learned from the experience.
Remember to thank your speakers and attendees, and then gather up all essential statistics and write up a report which outlines the goals that you had, the results you achieved and any lessons learned from the event. This will ensure that the next time you have a corporate event to plan you’ll be able to build on your previous experience to create an event that goes with a swing.