Above and Beyond
It is always important to set clear goal posts and although they do have to be realistic with regards to time frame and budget, endeavour to look for innovative ways to enhance your events and challenge your creativity. What you put into an event in terms of organised planning, effort, time and creativity will determine your achievements.
Motivate yourself to continuously set your sights high but don’t always expect everything to be perfect. If something doesn’t turn out exactly how you want, it doesn’t mean it was utter disaster either, so don’t waste time wallowing in your disappointment. Learn from any mistakes, make note of your best practices and put the learning curve to good use next time around. It is the ability to learn, improve and move on that defines our success.
Be Ahead Of The Game
Remember that you work in a competitive industry. You will need to establish your reputation and find a way in which to make you and/or your events company stand out. Always keep up to date with what is in vogue and try to be creative in ways that other people are not. Creativity however, is not the be all and end all of event planning and great customer service will give you a certain credit that your event knowledge and experience can’t.
Think outside the Box
Event planning is to be creative. Use the sum of your team’s knowledge to take your company to new heights and don’t ever allow yourself to become complacent. Look always to widen your horizons and challenge your comfort zone. Don’t limit your possible achievements simply because you are worried about trying something different. Be quirky, innovative and interesting. You don’t have to conform to what every one else is doing. There is always a niche in the market for fresh new ideas so why not allow yourself the luxury of having the edge over your competitors. Standing out from the crowd will get your name known and drive potential clientele in your direction.
Friends Can Be Found In The Most Unusual Places
Whether you are out to make friends or not, there are certain people who you need to have on your side….be nice to them and value their expertise! These people come in form of sound techs, light techs, IT guys, cleaners and the food and beverage team. Always keep the back of house people on your good side; without them, you won’t have an event or after party! These guys are often the under appreciated backbone of an event so it is worth remembering that a friendly smile and a ‘thank you’ goes a long way.
Go the Extra Mile
The extra mile is the difference between good and excellent. While I agree that there has to be a limit of what you can do in the amount of time you are being paid for, it is good for your reputation to offer a great value for money service and sometimes a little extra effort will serve you well for future business. You have to put in, in order to get back, so it may help to consider that all-important ‘extra mile’ as your financial investment into establishing a great reputation and long working relationships with your clients.
Try your best to accommodate your client’s requests whenever possible and without any unnecessary amateur dramatics just because it may mean you have to go a little out of your way to make it happen. It is often worth putting in a bit of extra effort to encourage repeat business. After all, you want happy customers, right! Never forget that your best marketing tool is the good word your client will put out there to friends and colleagues.
10 steps ahead
Anticipate your client’s needs and check out their previous events so as to know what they like and what they may expect. Ensure you have conducted some research on your client’s business to understand their direction and their clientele will also prove useful. Your client will certainly be impressed with your preparation.
Once you have the event brief and are fast approaching a follow up meeting, anticipate questions and be as prepared as you can to answer them. Always ensure you have followed up with anything you promised you would, as not doing so will not leave a good impression or stand you in good stead to close a deal or acquire further work.
Where possible, try to be the one to speak first in a meeting and cover all areas of follow up so your client will be left with most of their questions already answered. This will showcase your professionalism, organization and efficiency.
Attention to detail is crucial so don’t forget to cross the T’s and dot the I’s. Endeavour to give an event an element of surprise and cover any details that your client hasn’t thought of. Such a personalized touch may mean you have to go a little further out of your way than you might be used to but the effort will pay off, I promise. Even supplying a tray of pastries for a meeting could be the little detail that makes a world of difference. It is rare that anyone gets anything free anymore and if it hasn’t been requested it, it won’t be expected but will be certainly appreciated. After all, it is the thought that counts!