Around 85% of people in leadership roles believe in-person events are essential to the success of their company.
And event planning isn’t limited to the business world. Parties, ceremonies, and other formal gatherings are important to plan, too.
There is a real art to being an event planner. So much so that there are event planning jobs dedicated to this role, and you can even get an event planning certification.
But if you are planning an important event and don’t have time to take a course, you can follow this simple three-stage event planning template. No matter what event you are organizing, it covers everything you need to consider.
Stage 1: Pre-Event
Yes, only one stage of event planning happens before the event.
The pre-event stage is where all the prep work happens. To begin, have a brainstorming session with everyone involved in the event and decide what your objectives are.
If you’re planning a wedding, the objectives are obvious. But if you’re planning a networking event, do you want more clients or contacts? Make sure your aim is clear.
To plan an event, you also need:
- Budgets and itemized costs
- Date and time
- Invitations or a marketing plan
Contact your vendors as early as possible, and put creating the main event plan and schedule at the bottom of your list. It’s important, but not as timely.
Since no event happens without participants, you will likely be answering queries from the guest right up until the day of the event. No matter how well you communicate information, some attendees will have questions you won’t be able to predict.
Stage 2: During the Event
It’s the big day! Or days, if it’s a multi-day event.
The event planning is not over. In the days before and during the event, you need to:
- Register/greet guests
- Organize event equipment and decorations
- Orchestrate the schedule
- Direct suppliers
- Direct participants
And in the hours and days after the event, you will need to remove any equipment or decorations from the venue.
Stage 3: Post-Event
The third stage of event planning is what happens post-event. What this entails will depend on the type of event you planned.
After personal events like weddings, all that’s left to do is to send thank-you notes and post photographs on social media.
But for a business event, there will be a lot more to manage. You will need to send surveys and questionnaires to the attendees and analyze the event.
Sit down with other members of your team and reflect on what went well with the event and what you will do better next time. Make a list of which vendors you liked and ones you will not contact next time.
Event Planning the Right Way
Event planning can often be stressful and feel like you’re putting out fires inside of doing any actual organizing. But if you follow this three-stage template, you will plan an amazing event that attendees will be talking about for months.
Do you need to know how to plan an event for your business? Want to pick up some other useful skills too? Browse our website for tons of articles on marketing, finance, and more!