It’s late at night, you’re losing sleep as you run through a checklist in your head to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything. This can only mean one thing: event day is closing in! It is completely normal to experience a sense of unease as the clock ticks off, even if you have double-checked everything you can think of. The truth is that there will always be certain challenges of events management that you are bound to encounter, and no amount of strategising can help you avoid these. Good planning can however help you to respond to these challenges, and might even help to reduce your stress levels if you’re lucky!
One of the most common challenges faced by event planners is sticking to your budget. You might have everything planned out perfectly and then an unexpected expense comes along and then a spanner gets thrown into the works (hopefully not literally). Budgeting for the unexpected is just about impossible, but setting some of your budgets aside, specifically to deal with unforeseen circumstances, is a good start.
Using data from previous events that have a similar scope can give you a good idea as to how much your budget should be. Using historical statistics might also reveal some of the budgeting pitfalls that reared their heads during previous events. After you have identified the expenses that put the biggest dent into budgets in the past you can develop a plan to avoid overspending without compromising on quality.
Issues with Staffing and Vendors
Nobody wants to leave an event feeling that there was a lack of food and drinks available or even worse, a shortage of security. Understaffing can be a serious issue for any event and a shortage of vendors can range from being an inconvenience to being detrimental to your event.
Staffing issues often arise when there are more attendees than expected and the same is true for event vendors. If you are hosting an “invite only” event you should be able to plan your staff numbers quite effectively. When your guests rsvp online, you can simply use these numbers to prepare accordingly.
When your event is open to the public it can be difficult to pin down the exact number of expected guests. In this case, you can look at the size of your venue to determine how many staff members and vendors you need to effectively service the space. You can rather have too many staff members than too few, but this will undoubtedly affect your budget in a big way, so beware!
Picking the Right Venue
What type of event are you hosting? How many attendees are you expecting? What will the weather be like? Is there space for a VIP area? Is there a place for the band to set up? These are only some of the questions you need to run by yourself before booking your venue. Event managers often make the mistake of conceptualising their entire event before they have even thought of a venue.
Most event venues need to be booked months in advance and if you find yourself scrambling to find the perfect venue to fit your plan at the 11th hour you will most likely be out of luck. When you structure your event plan around a venue that you have already selected you to have a better chance of making the most out of that space.
If guests are able to rsvp online beforehand you have some insight as to what size venue you will need, but this is not always the case. Your venue will determine your capacity and capabilities to a certain degree, making your choice of venue one of the most important pieces of the events puzzle.
The challenges of events management are numerous and unfortunately, they only tend to pop up on the day of the event. Rest assured that issues will arise, but remember, how you decide to address these issues will ultimately determine the outcome of your endeavour.