Hosting a corporate event is a daunting, but exciting task. New York City is full of venues capable of hosting a top-notch event. Right off the bat, you’ll need to answer seemingly simple questions like: How do I choose the right venue? How do I prepare for the event in advance? But choosing the right venue involves more than finding a location that can accommodate your guest count. Similarly, executing your vision for the event requires more than just logistics. However, planning an event does not have to be complicated or scary.
Here is a primer on corporate event organizing to help you plan ahead.
Choose your venue carefully
The right venue can be a tremendous help to organizing your event. Everything from its design, location and staff can prove essential. Planning your event's needs should be the first thing you do before choosing your venue. The right choice of venue can go a long way to avoiding unexpected costs and making the event as enjoyable and stress-free for attendees.
Looking to minimize transportation costs? Try to find a venue that is close to a public transportation stop or to your company’s office if you’re local. Looking to have guests get dinner after the event? Consider a venue that is close to restaurants that will enhance your guests overall experience. Some venues are fairly isolated from restaurants, bars, and other businesses. If you need pre- and post-event meeting spots, consider a venue that is located in the heart of a neighborhood or district, and always ask the venue staff for recommendations!
Don't skimp on signage
It's easy to disregard signage. Do not make this mistake. Signs give your event a polished feel and extend the brand experience throughout the day. Signs also break up blank space within a venue and relate important or entertaining information to your guests. Be sure to include signage costs in your initial budget. Ask the venue contact for ways to use the space that cuts down on signage costs while enhancing overall branding.
Feed your guests well
Even if you plan on having guests eat after your event at nearby restaurants, it’s essential to provide snacks and beverages throughout the day to keep people energized. People often eat more at events than you might expect. Save time by asking the caterer or venue to come up with a menu – they probably have a great deal of experience in what guests enjoy and what they don’t.
Check the venue's amenities
Thoroughly crosscheck your event's needs with the venue's supplies. From chairs to tables to microphones and more, anything they have on hand means less expense and time for you. Visit your venue beforehand and imagine how you will lay out your event while in the space and the possible furniture and other amenities you may be able to use.
You can also ask the venue about recommended places to visit nearby. They will likely have a number of recommendations on places to eat, relax and sightsee that you might not be able to find in a traditional guide.
Expect the unexpected
Surprises happen with large events; the more prepared you are in general, the better equipped you will be to handle unexpected developments. Ask the venue if there is anything they expect from event organizers that you haven't yet covered or discussed. Go over what you need from them on the day of the event, and what they need to provide. Good communication and planning will go a long way in making your event a success.
You will undoubtedly have excellent support mechanisms in place to help you stay in tune with developments in corporate event organizing that can have an impact on your meeting in the short, medium, and longer term. You will always remain active on industry social networks to ask for help and share what you're learning, but remember, that a great venue staff is an invaluable resource as well.
The challenge you will always face is to acknowledge that with constant innovation and soaring client expectations, you have to spend more and more time finding the next great thing.