There’s always something about the holiday season which makes people want to drink more, meet more, go out more and generally: party more. For everyone in the event planning industry, the holiday season is peak season. This is where top-notch planning and coordination skills are needed. As a business, planning and scheduling your work in a systematic manner might just save you from the afterburn that most people experience post ‘season’.
You need to designate and partition your work schedule such that you find the best time to plan for all the events you have for the peak season. Understanding the best time to plan will bring much relief and joy to you, your employees as well as clients. Setting aside time to plan also maximizes the revenue potential of the high season, while also exceeding customer expectations. To stay relevant and ahead of your game, you need to set aside and understand a couple of things.
Consider the following when planning a peak season event:
- A stitch in time saves nine. This good old saying is solid gold. If you aptly plan prior to events, you will always stay in control and successfully prevent overload. Taking time to thoroughly prepare for events set to take place during the peak season, helps identify and eliminate problems. That way, performance during the high season is improved.
- Consider signing up interns and temps to help out during the season. Work that is shared evenly decreases the burden. By getting students to do their internships at your company, you increase the number of people willing to be hands on. Also, this is an excellent opportunity to get fresh, new creatives who are more than eager to please and will bring their A game.
- Learn to delegate and put a team to specifically handle operations. Operational challenges can be a real thorn. You need to check everything from equipment to location, replace and hire when needed. For high-end functions, you also need to check with guest visas, accommodations etc. An operations team will handle this well ahead of the hustle and bustle of the peak season.
- Plan how, when and where to execute each event, event program as well as management. Since time is of the essence, you need to allocate time to work on your timing and scheduling. This will help prevent issues such as double booking or overlooking events.
How to Choose a Day of the Week?
In peak season, the weekends are the first to get booked up. Friday through Sunday are the first days of the week to be picked out in almost every industry. Depending on the client’s brief and budget. Check the venue against the nearest available dates.
For clients who have events happening in their backyards or any other place that doesn’t require booking, then choosing the day of the week depending on your diaries. Once a date has been settled upon, you can print out the invitations and start working with your suppliers to order services for the event.
How to Choose the Time for an Event?
As part of an event organizer’s job requirements, you need to figure out the best time planning for an event. To select the time for an event, all concerned parties should be considered, i.e. you and your team’s availability, as well as the customer’s plans and schedule. When choosing the time for an event, it’s recommended to also check:
- Theme — for an adult-oriented event, the best time is almost always night time. Refer to the customer’s brief and use the given theme to schedule the time for the event
- Budget — clients with higher budgets need to feel special and must be treated with respect. When planning the time for their event and the time to spend around organizing their event, check with their diaries
- Venue and decorations — these play a major role when deciding how to choose the time for an event. You wouldn’t want to choose the middle of the day when it’s blazing hot to start an event that has live plucked roses for decorations
- Invitations — consider when and if these have been sent out. Usually, invitations are a continuation of the client’s brief. Checking the invitations will set you in the right direction towards choosing the right time for the event
- Foods and drink — obviously when it comes to water, there is no set time. However, for an event with alcohol, you’ll want to time it such that the drinks are kept chilled and the setting is just right. The same goes for food. Check with the client’s menu to see the type of food being served and this will point you towards the right direction regarding selecting the time to start the event.
There are a lot of other factors. All of them are not set in stone and tend to vary according to event and client brief. At the end of the day, you want to choose the right time, which will rightfully merge with the rest of the event plan.
Planning an Event Schedule
There are now a number of apps that can be used to help plan an event schedule. You want the event to be organized and already have a picked out event planning time, the next step requires coming up with the best schedule. Here’s one of the best event schedules that you can modify to suit your needs:
- Understand the event brief, set out the goal and objective of the event
- Pick out the most suitable people to be part of the team
- Choose the date for the event
- Create hype around the event and make sure that you market it as much as possible
- Come up with a master plan that covers all the details for event day
- Assign a special team for operations management
- Approach and sign sponsors and partners who are recognized brands
- Have a publicity and marketing plan
- Set out a feasible budget
- Have an actual evaluation process to measure the success post the event
- Finally, come up with the event program
There you have it!
Choosing the time for a schedule is not really so complicated. It’s important to take into consideration that the event planning industry is fragile. There is no, ‘one size for all.’ Be explorative and work with clients to find the best time in both your diaries. If you feel you’re already full, refer the ‘late client’ to your associate planners. An excellent way to avoid time clashes and overworking is knowing the amount of work to accept, even during the peak season.
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