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What to think about when staffing for an event
One of many puzzles to put together when organising an event is staffing. To create a successful event, having the right people at the right place is essential, and they are often the difference between a great event or an average one.
Rohrbasser’s philosophy is to foster close relationships with his clients, through a framework of Trust, Communication and Collaboration.
To learn more about staffing events, GBN had the opportunity to speak to Thomas Rohrbasser. He has extensive knowledge of this industry, having worked in the field for many years before founding his own company in 2016. In September last year, his company worked at Geneva’s Laver Cup. Other sporting events includes the The Swiss Indoors Basel.
Our interview quickly turned to a discussion about people, particularly staffing and how they create a great event.
So why is it important to hire – and keep – excellent people?
First impression and customer service
For spectators and visitors, how they are treated by the staff lingers for a long time in their memory. It is important, therefore, to have great employees who represent to a high-standard the “brand” of event. First impressions really do matter! And a successful event is overwhelmingly dependent on making sure all participants are treated exceptionally.
An important skill, if not the most important, according to Rohrbasser, is language skills. Switzerland has several different languages and it is necessary to make an effort and speak more than just one. French and Swiss-German are essential and High German and Italian definitely a major advantage. Other sought-after skills include motivation, flexibility and ability to work in a team.
Finding part-time, qualified people
Staffing a big event has many challenges to overcome. One is getting qualified and experienced staff who are available to work part-time.
A solution to this, according to Rohrbasser, is to establish a talent pool of students and other people and treat them extremely well. This is what Rohrbasser does, partly by not limiting the temporary staff with contractual obligations. He believes that his staff should have the flexibility to work for other companies as well.
Communication is key
How do the team communicate on-site during an event? Through the application Whatsapp he says without hesitation. It is quick and easy to use, and everyone already has it on their phone.
The pre-event briefing is paramount though. Rohrbasser highlights the importance of communicating clearly what he expects, letting the staff have a chance to ask questions, and having the organizer convey what their expectations are. Everyone is on the same page and can better work towards the same goal of making a successful event.
Entrepreneur and globetrotter
Following his graduation from the Ecole Hôtelière in Geneva and some international hotel experience, Rohrbasser worked as an event coordinator in at a Geneva bank. Fueled by ambition and a strong determination, and a desire to create something that was his, Rohrbasser founded his own event company when he was 27, called ThomasevenT. Then as now, he is driven to always do better and embrace challenges rather than shy away from them.
Still based in Geneva, Rohrbasser has had the opportunity to see a lot of the world, which he believes has opened up his mind and see opportunities in his professional field of choice.
What is next for ThomasevenT
The goal is to open up a second office in Crans-Montana, his mother’s hometown. And in the near future for Rohrbasser and his team? They just signed the Geneva Open 2020 and will work on making the event as successful as possible.
We would like to thank Thomas Rohrbasser for taking the time to share his insights and points of view of the industry.