From conferences and conventions to company retreats and product launches, corporate events play an important role in boosting organizational growth and employee productivity. Such gatherings serve as an informal ground, where competing brands of the same industry can meet, communicate, collaborate, and foster healthy professional relationships. These events help a business grow and stay relevant and are crucial to building and maintaining a company in more ways than one.
However, managing and planning a successful event that can entertain and indulge guests is no easy task and requires more than just an idea or financial resources. Abundant time, effort, and planning must go into every detail to ensure that the final result is spectacular and has no glitches. Many aspects of a perfect event, including a good venue, modern décor, and trained staff members, can be managed beforehand, but certain situations are just beyond human control. When it comes to circumstances like bad weather, an unpredictable number of guests, faulty light and sound system, there is only so much that can be done. We can plan all we want, but the truth is that there is no way to know what will be thrown at you before the night ends. Although we cannot predict a disaster before it happens, we can learn to expect the unexpected and stay prepared so no incident catches us off-guard.
Here we list some common event disasters and possible ways to avoid them.
Guests can survive without refreshments, music, or even entertainment, but the shortage of properly functioning toilets is bound to send them spiraling into chaos. Whether your event is indoors or outdoors, big or small, start by contacting a portable restroom rental service, as it is a critical aspect of attendee comfort. Even if your event isn’t in an open space and is at a venue with inbuilt bathrooms, getting a portable backup toilet will only do you good. More often than you think, one toilet isn’t enough to accommodate all your guests and fulfill their needs. What happens if the bathroom on-site suddenly malfunctions, runs out of water, or gets clogged? It would wreak havoc amongst your attendees. Indeed, with events of such importance, it is better to be safe than sorry; your guests will thank you for giving them access to functioning, well-maintained toilets with proper amenities.
One of the biggest and most common problems that event planners run into is miscalculating the number of people who will show up. If more than an expected number of guests arrive at the venue, available amenities like food and drinks, party favors, or even seating arrangement are bound to fall short. Similarly, the event could turn out to be a major flop if not many guests turn up. The venue would appear empty, people wouldn’t have anyone to interact with, and the speakers would find themselves talking to a vacant lot. However, this issue is easily manageable. The best solution is to set a deadline on your invitation and ask your guests to register their attendance a day or two before the event. This way, you’ll know exactly how many people will attend and can make adjustments to your venue or layout accordingly. But remember to plan for 10-20 people above the expected headcount to ensure no minor inconveniences.
An integral part of a successful event is its speakers and entertainers. While they add life to the event, knowing that their words significantly impact your business is important. If they end up going off-topic or saying something controversial, it will reflect terribly on your brand. For instance, guests are bound to be annoyed if your speaker makes racist comments, jokes at the expense of others, and indulges in topics that go against certain cultural beliefs.
Avoid this by staying in close contact with your speaker, conducting a practice session, and clarifying your expectations. To prevent controversial debates, inform them about the topic to avoid beforehand. Another precaution you can take is to consult people who’ve hired them before regarding their experience to avoid hiring individuals with a poor work ethic or a bad rep. Only hire reliable speakers who can be trusted to show up on time and respect the guests around.
Be it a faulty sound system, flickering lights, a defective microphone, or a corrupted hard drive, and nothing ruins an event quite like technical issues. Indeed, technology is unpredictable, and when it comes to electricity, all it takes is a single power outage or a fuse to blow up, and the entire system comes crashing down. To reduce the chances of such an error, make sure to test the equipment several times, keep spare parts ready, train the staff on how to use backup gadgets, and have a contingency plan if the slideshow doesn’t work. If there is a power outage, your kitchen staff must know how to save the food while the refrigerator doesn’t work, keep abundant flashlights ready for use and hire professionals who know how to work the fuse box. Know whether there is a generator on-site. Backup power resources will have your event up and running in no time. While the staff manages the situation, it is your responsibility to keep the guests calm and make sure that everyone exits safely.
While you cannot predict a medical crisis before it happens, you can prepare yourself so that such an incident doesn’t catch you off-guard. First things first, stay calm and composed! To prevent panic and fear amongst guests, you as host must remain at ease, provide support, and assure them that help Is on its way. A slight delay could be the only standing difference between life and death when it comes to medical emergencies. So even if the situation doesn’t appear critical, call 911, don’t take the unnecessary risk of worsening the patient’s health. Have a first-aid kit ready on-site and accessible to all staff members so that minor injuries can be dealt with immediately and blood loss be avoided. Try your best to contain or separate the emergency to prevent a ripple of paranoia amongst your guests.
Planning and preparing for unexpected disasters are a part of good event management. With a gathering on a massive scale, minor errors here and there are bound to happen. However, if you are vigilant, well-informed, and have the adequate tools at your disposal, one small slip-up doesn’t have to derail the whole event.