The time has come to start planning your next event and the pressure is on! You might have a good idea of what you want to achieve with this event, but uncertainty starts to creep in when you start trying to wrap your head around all the small details that need to be taken care of. A wise man once said that preparation is the key to success, and what better way to prepare than with a structured plan? The 5 Cs of event management come together to form exactly that, a structure that event planners can use to help ensure that all their bases are covered.
The 5 Cs of event management are Concept, Coordination, Control, Culmination and Closeout.
Let’s take a look at each of these in more detail!
Whether the idea for the event came to you in a dream or during an intense brainstorming session, your concept has to be clear. The first step is establishing a clear purpose for the event and pinning down what exactly you wish to accomplish. Once you know what you wish to achieve, it should be much easier to identify the type of crowd that you need to attract. For example, if you are planning to host a family day in the park, your traditional- and digital marketing efforts could be wasted if focused on teenagers as they are less likely to attend such an event. After you have established the purpose and the people you want to attract, you can use this info to determine a date and a venue that best suits your needs.
Now we start getting down to the nitty-gritty of the event. During the coordination phase, you need to establish your budget and set up a timeline for the event. These are crucial aspects of the planning phase so make sure to put your thinking caps on at this stage! This is also when you start running up your phone bill as you start calling around for the perfect venue, food caterers, security personnel, decorators and entertainment. Run through the event in your mind starting from event registration up until the point where your attendees exit the venue. Everything in between needs to be ticked off during this phase of your plan.
Your sleepless nights are almost coming to an end and event day is peeking at you from around the corner. During the control stage, you do a run-through of the event to identify possible problems and come up with contingency plans if necessary. Visit the event venue and see for yourself if there is enough space for the number of attendees you are expecting. Is there enough room for your vendors to set up? Is there water and electricity supply in the places you need it? Do you have a backup generator in case there is a power outage? You need to ask yourself all of these questions now to avoid having to deal with them in a panic on the day of the event.
This is it, event registration has concluded and the event is about to begin! You will most likely be seen with a walkie-talkie in hand for the majority of the event as you communicate with suppliers, staff, security and everyone in-between. Always keep your timelines in mind as you coordinate your team throughout the day. In the likely event that something goes wrong, it is your job as an event manager to provide the guidance that leads to the best resolution. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes as there is sure to be a lot of running around on event day.
A sigh of relief echoes down the halls, your event is over and by all measures, it was a success. The closeout can be seen as an evaluation period, where you identify your shortcomings and highlight that which helped make the event a success. Feedback from your clients and attendees is invaluable information that can be a great resource for planning your next event, so be sure to gather as much as you can! There is always room for improvement and the importance of the closeout phase should not be underestimated.
Now that you have a plan in place you can go out and conquer the world of events planning with confidence!