Updated: Apr 20
The stress of ensuring everything runs smoothly on the event day is on everyone’s mind. Event organisers face the pressures of many complications and having to maintain a calm, professional state while really, all they want to do is scream! Ease the stress by ensuring you are the most productive version of yourself by following the tips we’ve come up with below.
MAKE A PLAN. A solid plan ensures yourself and the rest of your team are aware of what needs to happen, in what room, at what time and controlled by who.
STEP 1: Set the standard for the day:
Make expectations for last minute changes on behalf of of your clients, sponsors and suppliers. Strong communication and understanding before the event can reduce the potential for last minute changes but it is still likely that this complication may occur.
Set and communicate all deadlines with clients, vendors, partners and so on. Constantly remind people as all humans forget things every now and then. Don’t risk your chances and expect everyone to remember!
Set consequences for anyone signing a contract with you who do not deliver to the agreements made, including if they pull out last minute! This will significantly reduce chances that a venue will cancel on you two days before the event or your photographers try charging you £1000 more.
Ensure you have a team you are familiar and confident in. Having just one unreliable individual in your team adds unnecessary stress. Scout out the best people for the job and let this worry sink to the back of your mind.
STEP 2: Build yourself up for the big day:
Get a good night’s sleep. Having a routine in place that ensures consistent sleep and waking hours will make sure your body wakes up ready to take on the day. Make sure you get at-least 7-9 hours of sleep before the big day to ensure you are fully rested and able to take on the day.
Begin your morning with a relaxing activity. Everyone is different. Perhaps reading a motivational book, going for a jog or just sitting still with quiet music makes you feel relaxed.
Stay hydrated. Dehydration leads to fatigue, inflammation and fatigue. If you get caught up at the event and are unable to eat for a while, water will fill you up and allow you to power on for a little longer.
Do not skip meals. Eating might seem like the last thing you have time for when you’re rushing round trying to ensure the event is a success. Nonetheless, eating will give you the energy to last throughout the day and give you the fuel to perform your best. Skipping meals will lead you to be irritable and have low blood sugar. As the events planner you are in control of everything, being stressed and angry will make your team feel agitated and you won’t work as efficiently.
Wear clothing and footwear that you are comfortable in. Most people feel good when they look good. Stock your wardrobe up with some classic trousers, tops and cardigans that make you feel confident. The last thing you want is to start the big day overthinking your outfit and feeling overwhelmed.
STEP 3: Create lists that include all details.
List’s allow you to keep all relevant data in one place. Lists are also very effective as you can give them out to the rest of your team to make sure everyone knows what is going on.
Create a ‘master’ to do list. Create a list that includes EVERYTHING that needs to be completed for the event. You may choose to create smaller lists for each of the finer details for your event. For example you may have a list for things to do with guests, with the venue, with you speakers and so on. You may also create lists for other people on your team so they know the individual jobs they need to complete.
Rearrange your to do list in the order things need to be completed. One way you can do this is through a Gantt Chart. Having a timeline will give you and your team deadlines to get through and allow you to break all of the tasks down.
STEP 4: Execute effective productivity and management skills
This is the stage in the process where you need to take control and initiative instead of leaving the responsibility in the hands of others. It is your event after all!
Group tasks together that are similar. For example, if you know you need to greet and checkin in your speakers and get them to sign consent forms, do both at the same time. You’re with the very people you need to be with to complete the tasks. Get the tasks done at the first opportunity so you can cross another thing of your to-do list.
Assign specific jobs to your team.Your team are there for a reason, so use them. You can give your team jobs that don’t require you to be there with them. for example, let your team handle social media, checking in guests, the PA system or even taking canapes round!
Have a go-to-kit. There’s always a chance a speaker’s dress may rip, your banner might collapse or some chairs might break. Keep a go-to-kit with you at all events that include all the basics: sellotape, safety pins, plasters, chargers, batteries etc.
Check in with everyone involved in the event three days before and then again a day before. Don’t leave the first reminder to the day before the event because then you leave people with no time to do the jobs they need to do to be prepared for the event.
Run through the whole event a week before with your whole team. This task is most effective when done at the proper venue for the event as it gives you a clear understanding of how everything will be. Run through room layout, where the food will be served, who will be responsible for what job and so on. This task also gives you the opportunity to see if you have forgotten anything while still giving you enough time to resolve it.
STEP 5: Streamline your own efforts