Corporate events are held for several reasons. Your company might need a morale boost. Sales may need new product education to sell effectively and grow revenue. Management may spend a weekend training and participating in team building activities. Regardless of the motivation, there are some tried and true steps for planning a corporate event.
Rather than trying to reinvent the wheel and
avoid added stress, follow the steps below!
Be clear on the true intention of your event – define your goals and objectives. What are you trying to accomplish and why? What do you want your attendees to walk away thinking, feeling and – most importantly – doing?
If possible, give yourself ample time for planning and for pre-production. Time is your friend and can be on your side when managed strategically. Use it to your advantage.
Come up with a theme. Regardless of what the event is for, there needs to be a golden thread (or theme) to tie the event together.
Set a budget. Have an experienced executive producer manage it. This makes the difference between having Malcolm Gladwell speak at your event versus Jimmy, your next-door neighbor with the mole, speak.
Get a solid production partner in place that can assist you with the details – large and small. Still struggling with creating a wow moment? Your production partner can help make it happen.
Work through the different ways you can reinforce the company brand and event theme. From signage and animations, to scripting the message and visual support, to the speakers and entertainment you select – seek out every opportunity to be impactful and memorable.
Choose engaging speakers. Perhaps they can come from an industry outside of yours, to offer a different perspective. However, keep their speaking time to a minimum. Ever heard of “too much of a good thing?”
Make sure your content is the star of the event – not the speakers, not the entertainment. Every element should be tied to your theme and to the heart of your message.
9.) Methods and Tools
Leverage production management methods and tools. Technology can help you manage details and budgets in ways you wouldn’t believe. Email is not enough.
Schedule reoccurring meeting times to make sure the key decisions makers are available for timely reviews of content. If feedback is given, there should be adequate time to make changes.
Keep content changes to a minimum a few days out from show-site. Your production partner is gong to need time to pre-cue all stage activities. Pre-plan as much as possible.
12.) Active Breaks
Consider weaving in breaks that involve a physical or mental activity (e.g. yoga or meditation) – instead of just the typical email and coffee time. Research has shown audiences who have physical and mindfulness activity retain more content.
Get your people to show up for rehearsals and make sure you attend all rehearsals with the production crew.