Successful corporate event planning takes more than just a great agenda and a high-quality venue. Preparation and multiple people in varying roles must all participate in order to deliver an executive-worthy event. Key stakeholders must be involved throughout the process; support staff must have clear directions, and the point person running it all must work closely with the entire team to bring it all together.
Here are the must-have players on any corporate event planning team:
Depending on the scope of the event and the size of the organization, there will most likely be one or more executives involved in laying the groundwork. It is important to understand what their thoughts are on the business goals associated with the event, the budget, the agenda, and so on. Some of the responsibilities that executive decision-makers have during planning are:
- Determining the overall budget for the event
- Determining the business objectives, theme, and tone of the event
- Vetting the speakers and activities
- Approving major expenditures
- Participating in development of the agenda
- Making crucial decisions throughout the planning process
- Not only participating in and championing the event itself but also the activities pre and post to set the tone
Keeping these key team members informed throughout the planning process makes it easier to achieve fast decision-making and allows corporate event planners to quickly get buy-in on new ideas.
Learning and Development/Human Resources
If the event includes a learning element, the appropriate people in the organization must be involved. Having these team members involved will ensure your event is aligned properly with existing initiatives and will make the most effective impact on key stakeholders. Some of the responsibilities of this role are:
- Recommending training content for the event
- Developing a curriculum if necessary
- Sourcing a partner to deliver training content
- Ensuring that learning events are in line with the organization’s objectives and strategy
Learning and development professionals can offer unique insights into corporate event planning that other team members might not have. If this role doesn’t exist in the organization, it could be filled by an HR professional or the event planner themselves.
Event Planning Staff
Nobody has unlimited time in the day, and a corporate event planner cannot be in two places at the same time. Having support staff available is essential for a successful event. Remember that when assigning the following tasks, it is your responsibility to work with team members to create individual project deadlines so that you can manage the timeline and optimally use your available resources. These team members are responsible for tasks such as:
- Ensuring presentation technology is functioning
- Working with venue staff to provide food and other amenities
- Registering event participants
- Coordinating lodging and transportation for participants and presenters
- Preparing information packets and setup/takedown of the event materials
You can’t have a successful corporate event without participants. The more engaged they are before, during, and after the event, the higher the chance of success for all involved stakeholders. Bear this in mind as you plan the agenda and schedule learning events. Incorporate a variety of sessions to keep people engaged and consider one or more experiential events. Start engaging attendees in the days and weeks before the event to generate excitement and maintain the momentum you’ve built by investing time into planning a reinforcement and measurement strategy for after the event concludes.
Corporate event planning is no small task. Even a single-day company event can take months of careful planning and a tight-knit team to successfully execute. Form your team early to ensure faster decision-making and greater buy-in from all the key stakeholders throughout the process.