Simplify Organizing Your Next Event!

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October 18, 2016 – Issue 44
Photo: Golf Tournament Fund Raiser (Van Abad) © www.flickr.com

I decided to enter our club’s speech contest this fall for Toastmasters and was successful in moving to the next level of the Area contest and eventual the Division level.  Now, usually most Toastmasters events are well organized, however, this time around, especially the area contest, it was a disaster.

In Toastmasters we have so many experienced people that are willing to help out whether to be there in person or to provide guidance through email and/or phone calls.  Therefore, to hear people give excuses that they had no one to help them or they did not know what to do is totally unacceptable.

“Good plans shape good decisions.
That’s why good planning helps to make elusive dreams come true.”
~Geoffrey Fisher

Whether you are organizing events such as fund-raisers, parties, workshops, focus groups or even a large family gathering, for it to be a success it takes planning, organization and preparation, plus a lot of hard work and having a team to help you, for it to go off without too much hassle.  Now as Christmas is approaching you may be asked to organize the company party or if you are volunteering you may be asked to assist in putting on a fund-raising event.

Here is a checklist to get you started, to ensure your event is well planned out, organized and a success for everyone who is attending.

⎕ Give yourself plenty of time to plan and organize your event.
⎕ And if necessary, time to complete any research you may need in preparation for the event.
⎕ See if there is anyone in your network circle who can provide you with support, mentoring and guidance if required.
⎕ Identify a few dates and times that is best to host this event, since it will depend on available venues.
⎕ Check out various locations to host your event.
⎕ Identify what you will need to host the event.
⎕ Create a budget.
⎕ Identify what roles are required.
⎕ Identify and recruit individuals who can fill these roles.
⎕ Identify your speaker(s) and/or entertainment requirements for your event.
⎕ If your event needs specific speakers and/or entertainment, ensure to book them early on, otherwise they could end up being engaged.
⎕ If your event is a workshop, you’ll need to prepare your power point slides, handouts and other material.
⎕ Create a schedule for your event.
⎕ If sponsorships are a requirement for your event, then it is best to start early.
⎕ Will you be marketing this event or is it by invitation only– then, keep those individuals informed and up-to-date with what is happening.
⎕ Send out reminders for people to register or RSVP on a regular basis.
⎕ Continue to promote and market your event right up to the date of the event or deadline.
⎕ Purchase items you may need for your event i.e. snacks, prizes, crafts and decorations.
⎕ For workshops, print your handout material, agenda and back room sales material.
⎕ Inform the venue of the expected number of attendants, the room set-up, equipment needs and food requirements.
⎕ Make a list of what you’ll need to take with you on the date of the event so you don’t forget anything.
⎕ Make sure to start on time – be respectful of people’s time.
⎕ Relax and have fun.
⎕ Thank everyone who has helped and supported you for this event.
⎕ Celebrate your success.
⎕ After the event, ascertain what was successful and where you could improve in preparation for your next event.
⎕ Then, begin again to plan and organize your next event.

“Good planning I’ve always thought is in the details…
Plan it out, make it interesting, and you’re sure to pull it off!”
~Eddie Ross

For some events it may take you and your team a year ahead of time to plan and organize, versus smaller and intimate events may only take you one to two months to prepare.  Here is another source you can refer to in planning and organizing your event.  A blog I wrote July 28, 2015 – Issue 12: “Successful Events Commence Asking – “5W’s & How” Questions!”  Please click here.  Good luck and have fun with your future events.

PLAN for Your Success!

Suzanne

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