How to be successful in organizing events

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An event planner is a multi-tasker. Whatever is being organized, he or she needs to remember many things, contact many partners in time and watch deadlines closely in order to meet them. All these tasks require a well-defined time frame to be accomplished.

organising eventsSometimes event planners might have to manage the unexpected or deal with emergencies. In that case, he or she will have to reorganize the day’s schedule and show flexibility and adaptability. Working in conference, symposium or event organization means working in a fast-paced environment that can be extremely motivating.

Here are a few professional tips:

  1. Have a clear view of what needs to be organised and how much detail is needed to achieve the desired goal.
  2. Have a clear vison of all of the important deadlines (write them on the related documents in big font with flashy colors, or create a detailed workplan).
  3. When contacting a partner to collaborate on a project, estimate the time needed to achieve the goals. Think in a reverse chronological order and define when to start the project to meet deadlines.
  4. Prepare a list of priorities and a “to-do” list every day.
    • Prepare three or four filing trays :
    • Urgent” – documents/tasks requiring action in the immediate future or in the current week
    • To do” – documents with later deadlines than in the first tray
    • Ongoing” – documents/tasks that may or may not have a specific deadline, but need to be monitored
    • Stuff to be filed” – must be done on a daily basis in order not to drown in paperwork.
  5. Classify all correspondence and documents very clearly and in a way that anyone (colleagues or a boss, in case of absence) can find the necessary documents quickly and easily. This is very useful if anything urgent has to be fixed/sorted.
  6. At the end of each working day, review the tasks done, those that have to be done first thing in the morning, and check the deadlines in the “ongoing” tray.
  7. Think of every detail (make a list) that might be important so that things run smoothly.
  8. Be precise when working with a partner on any particular projects.
  9. If requests must be sent to different partners, make sure the follow-up is done quickly. Also, note that people are very busy with their own work, and sometimes persistence will be needed to obtain the required information.
  10. Perfection does not exist, especially in events! The unexpected is part of an event organizer’s life. It can occur anytime without it necessarily being the organizer’s fault. So when the unexpected occurs, it is important to remain calm and professional while dealing with the situation.
  11. Last but not least : have fun in organizing and be creative!

One very personal tip: if possible, first thing in the morning, meditate before going to work. It definitely helps with staying calm and focused on the tasks at hand.

Organizing events is fun, but it is a lot of work. From the outside it may seem very easy, but it requires a high level of organization and creativity. However, it can be a source of great learning as the organizer “travels” mentally through the different steps, visualizing the outcome of the event at each step, and watching the magic when an event is a success.

Photo credit: sindler1 via Fotolia.com

Comments

  1. mercy

    The thing about well organised event is you can always tell. There are a lot of détails that no matter how long you have been organising events you will still need to sort out.

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