How to Create a Successful Corporate Event

corporate event

Corporate events are important for improving work culture and building relationships with the community. As you begin to plan your upcoming corporate event, it’s important to make sure you have everything in order.

Whether you’ve planned an event before or this is your first time, the nine tips below will help you create a successful corporate event.

 Determine the purpose of your event.

The first thing you should do is determine the purpose of your event. This will help you focus your energy and prioritize certain parts of your planning. An event to celebrate and thank employees will look a bit different than an event geared at nurturing relationships with customers.

Before you plan anything else, you should know your goals for the event. These goals will help you focus your energy (and budget!) on the right things.

Set your event budget.

Figure out how much money you can afford to spend on the event. In the preliminary planning stages, determine how much of that budget will go to each major expense. Keep in mind costs for venue, music, catering, decorations, and unexpected expenses.

It’s a good idea to set your budget a little bit higher than you need, since events almost always end up costing more money than anticipated. If your corporate budget includes a budget line for events, determine how much of your annual event budget should be spent on this single event.

Set a planning timeline & choose a planning committee.

You should have a clear idea of when things need to be completed to successfully plan an event. Write down dates for booking a venue, hiring musicians, contacting keynote speakers, hiring a caterer, and setting up the event.

No event can be planned alone. Make sure you have a committee in place to help with the planning and execution of the event. Every person on the committee should know their responsibilities. Once everyone is on board, you can begin making arrangements for the event.

Pick & book your ideal venue.

Before you get into planning the small details for the event, you should pick and book your venue. The venue plays a big role in what your event looks like, so it’s important to have this booked before you start making additional plans. Book as early as possible to guarantee availability.

If you have a flexible date for the event, you have a greater chance of getting your preferred venue. However, a fixed event date may require you to have a backup venue planned.

Hire a band.

Live music is great for corporate events. You should carefully hire a band that fits with your venue and the vision you have for the event. It’s important to always book your musicians early, especially if your event is during a high-demand season. It may be tempting to cut costs on this front, but the right live band can significantly add to the success of your event.

Just like planning your venue, it’s important to have a couple ideas in mind for event music. Our services can help connect you to musicians that fit the vision for your corporate event.

Contact & book other services.

Once you have your venue and music in place, start contacting and booking other services. Hire catering, decorators, photographers, florists, keynote speakers, and event coordinators as needed. If you plan to have in-house employees fill these roles, it’s important that those individuals are contacted early to guarantee their availability.

Make sure each person involved in the event planning knows what their role is and what they need to do leading up to the event. Assign roles for the day of the event to prevent confusion.

Promote your event.

If your event is planned for employees only, contact them through employee email and company announcements. Use all relevant work channels to let your employees know about the upcoming event.

If you’re creating an event for customers or the community, use different advertising methods to get the word out. Social media, local radio stations, and even billboards will help inform the community about your upcoming event. You may consider hiring a graphic designer to create compelling advertisements to use online. If you have an in-house graphic designer, make sure he or she has plenty of time to create these ads in advance.

Plan for hiccups.

Events rarely go exactly as planned. Make sure you have space in your planning to deal with hiccups. You should always have at least one person assigned to fill in where needed. If someone calls off sick or doesn’t show up, that extra person can step into another role as needed.

Because the planning committee will be most knowledgeable about the day’s plans, they are a valuable resource to keep things running smoothly.

After the event, get feedback and evaluate success.

The week after the event, get feedback about how it went. Pay attention to what employees are saying about the event and use that information to plan your next event. This is especially important if you’re planning to make this an annual event.

Within a couple of weeks of the event, sit down with your planning committee to discuss the event. The following questions can help guide your discussion:

What went well?

What didn’t go well?

What can we do better when planning the next event?

What surprised you about the event?

Are there any vendors you definitely want to use again?

Are there any vendors you want to avoid next year?

What feedback have you heard from people outside the committee?

Make sure someone takes notes during this meeting. Refer to those notes at the first planning meeting for your next event to make sure you remember what you discussed during this time of reflection.

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