Planning a corporate event seems simple at first. You just book a hotel, arrange some travel and you’re all set, right?
Even though we’ve all attended meetings, running them in a flawless and professional manner is a completely different story.
The reality is that event planning can be challenging if unprepared. It demands time, focus, research, budgeting, logistical skills and relevant knowledge that many corporate leadership teams simply don’t possess.
Sadly, far too many companies try to figure it out on their own in order to save costs and their event becomes an epic disaster. Why you may ask? Simply put it’s not a core competency and nor should it be.
Before you plan your next event, make sure you have the proper negotiation skills and adequately trained resources in place to get the job done right. If you don’t have those skills and resources internally, it makes sense to hire a corporate event planner.
When to Hire a Corporate Event Planner: 10 Ways to Know
Wondering if you should hire a corporate event planner? Here are some top signs that it’s time to call in some help.
1. You don’t have the time upfront or resources internally.
Really, who does? You’ve got a job to do and planning an ad-hoc event is not part of that.
Events can take weeks or even months of lead-time planning. If you or someone at your organization doesn’t have time to handle all of the details, it makes sense to hire help.
2. You need to deliver an amazing experience and can’t risk failure.
If you don’t have event planning experience, you are not fully aware of how much must be accomplished in advance of your event date. It can be overwhelming!
Delivering a flawless event is always priority number one, so it makes sense to hire a partner that operates with the same level of excellence and professionalism -owning each and every detail to ensure a top-notch experience for your corporate and healthcare professional attendees.
3. You have never been to the locations being discussed.
Google can only tell you so much. On the ground knowledge of your event location will help guarantee the success of your event.
Without that, how can you be sure the hotel accommodations, meeting venues and entertainment options live up to the pictures online? Additionally many companies have guidelines in place that dictate hospitality depending upon the countries involved in the meeting.
Event planning specialists have a wealth of global knowledge at their disposal, and are focused on equipping you with unique, uncommon facts and proven, direct experience and opinions, so that you feel confident in making an informed decision about your final event location!
4. You are unfamiliar with legal and logistical requirements.
Traveling overseas can be tricky – especially when you are responsible for the safe arrival of your employees, clients, speakers and vendors.
You cannot afford to ignore the logistical challenges for group travel – including obtaining visas, having accurate participant documentation, reserving airlines, providing alternate transportation and finalizing lodging confirmation materials, etc. Having back-up plans in place will ensure your attendees arrive to the meeting hassle-free.
Don’t let these hurdles get in the way of your meeting’s success. Make sure you have someone on your team that is qualified and designated to handle all of the important minute logistic details which can have a major impact. Otherwise hire an expert.
5. You lack industry-specific event planning experience.
We work with a lot of clients in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries. The events we plan for these clients require intensive knowledge about regulations as it relates to compliance, confidentiality and security.
If you’re not aware of the hospitality guidelines or country codes of conduct requirements needed for your industry, it pays to get help from an expert who does.
6. You lack the tools or technology.
Hypothetically, let’s assume that you need to virtually connect approximately 120 people who speak several different languages, hailing from 4 different time zones, with an event that’s happening in Singapore…
Okay, done! It’s simply that easy – at least it is for us at Miller Tanner. Because we have the tools, technology, and people to make it happen seamlessly.
But, if you don’t have those resources at your disposal, you definitely need to bring in help from someone who does.
7. You do not speak the native language.
Language can prove to be a big barrier in planning your event.
If you don’t speak the language of the country you’re visiting, you are likely to encounter logistical challenges with your event’s planning activities. Some hotel contracts only come in the local language for instance.
Having local contacts on the ground could not be more important, when considering the countless unknowns each new territory has to offer. Having a global partner is key to overcome language barriers wherever your meeting is taking place.
8. You cannot decide on a location.
The world is a big, beautiful place. With so many options, it can be overwhelming to choose the perfect location for your next event. It helps to know where the majority of your guests will be coming from.
Many times, we have found, that our client’s final deciding factor in choosing one destination over another potential location was something that they had not previously been aware of, or recognized as highly valuable. Understanding your meeting’s purpose, defining success upfront and being clear on your expectations is imperative to select the right location options from which to then narrow down.
An experienced global event planning company can help you choose a location that best meets the goals, needs and budget for your event.
This guide we created outlines some of the best global locations to consider in 2016 when planning an event. These cities offer value and premium options for your budget considerations.
9. You don’t have relationships with third party vendors.
You can certainly plan an event without a deep roster of vendor relationships. But your negotiation power will be limited.
However, when you have established relationships with hotels, airlines and other vendors, you can often better negotiate discounted group rates for your attendees. That’s what event planners bring to the table.
Not to mention, strong vendor relationships can help guarantee all the little details will be handled appropriately and timely. Vendor management alone can be a daunting and time-consuming task to ensure you’re getting the best service possible at a reasonable rate.
10. You are uncertain on how to define your event success.
A bullet without a focused target is simply a shot in the dark. It can be incredibly valuable to have a partner who can execute on your vision of success.
Some of the best services, which we are able to offer clients, involves the ability to use a completely organic, personalized approach on how to define and deliver success. We’re able to do that because we take the time to identify and understand company goals and stakeholders’ expectations.
The bottom line?
Yes, you can plan your own corporate event. But, if you find yourself questioning your knowledge, losing extensive time to this activity, or doubting your professional capabilities in any or all of the areas we have mentioned above, give us a call. Miller Tanner can typically turn around a ballpark quote in under 24 hours.
Any meeting or event worth having is worth having it done right. And, we’d love to help.