Planning conferences and events takes great organizational skill and a close attention to detail. It does not matter where you hold your event. Whether it is a San Diego event venue such as the Westfield Horton or the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles, there are some very simple mistakes you can quite easily avoid making.
CHECK THE WEATHER
Bad weather can kill outdoor events stone dead. Apart from the fact nobody will want to come, you immediately have a safety issue if electrics are in use and there is no cover. Bad weather can affect indoor events too. After all, how will people get there if the roads are closed due to heavy snow or flooding? Make plans to cope with all weather extremes, from providing extra drinking water in hot weather to umbrellas in wet weather.
CARRY OUT A RISK ASSESSMENT
Carrying out a risk assessment will enable you to plan for every possible eventuality. The better you plan, the less likely something unexpected will disrupt the event and cost you time and money. Start conducting risk assessments from the very beginning of the event planning process.
NOT PROVIDING WI-FI
Nowadays we expect free Wi-Fi wherever we go. We also expect a good connection, so in the first instance provide Wi-Fi and secondly, make sure it is up to the job of connection everyone in the venue with his or her email and social media accounts. Giving people the ability to be able to share information on social media is critical to any event. The more cut-off from the outside world people feel, the faster they will leave.
NOT ENOUGH STAFF
Be sure to hire enough staff to manage the event on the day. It doesn’t look good when the check-in lines are miles long and you have huge crowds of people milling around aimlessly. This tends to foster intense irritation amongst attendees, who will probably then post critical comments online. Provide more staff at the beginning of the day when people are arriving. Once everyone has checked-in, some of these staff either can be moved to other duties or sent home.
NOT ENOUGH REFRESHMENTS
Have you even been to a wedding where the food turns out to be a few meager plates of sausage rolls and chips? If so, you will understand how annoying it is to attend a conference or event where there is not enough food and drink to go around. Buffets need to be per head, so provide the caterer with accurate numbers before the big day to ensure they prepare enough food. You also need to check that everything is evenly distributed throughout the venue.
Make sure you follow up with guests after the event. People will be more engaged in the first few days after an event, so they are more likely to respond to messages and do business with you. At the very least, send a thank-you note and invite them to come to future events you are planning. It is good manners after all.