Event-planning is like baking a pie. While it is important to know your eggs and butter, it is crucial to picture what you want to come out of the oven before even starting. Thankfully, behind every successful event – as with any delicious pie – there is a thoroughly descriptive, well-worked and tried recipe. In today’s blog, I will describe the key steps of organizing an event and highlight the little tips to consider along the way.
WHAT? The first point of focus is also the broadest one: the purpose of the event. This will trigger a large chain of processes, with various options and decisions to be made. A birthday party, a bridal shower, and a corporate anniversary all are events – each one distinct from another, with specific customs and expectations to be met.
WHEN? While some events are tied to specific days in the calendar – birthdays most commonly, – others are more tolerant to time delays. As a rule of thumb, it should take around one to two months of unhurried but focused planning to organize an event from ground up, with major events like weddings taking up to half a year. It goes without saying that, for the majority of people, Saturdays are the most convenient days to attend a party, have a drink, socialize, and forget about work. Thus, it is better to schedule on a weekend, when possible.
WHERE? The particular location of an event, considered at a specific time of the year, will determine such factors as weather and daylight, both of which are vital for a successful outdoor celebration. While indoor parties are more lenient in terms of those conditions, some locales will seem more attractive based on parking availability, proximity to the guests’ homes, or a seashore view from the panoramic window. Time and location may also work to your benefit in terms of seasonal offers and promotions. This brings us to the next point.
HOW MUCH? The budget is, arguably, the greatest factor determining the quality of an organized event. This is not to say that every good party will break the bank, but careful choices in some key areas are necessary to keep spending to a reasonable limit. This is most often true with large-budget celebrations, such as weddings and corporate anniversaries, where the money leaks from many holes. Gold-leafed invitations and chainsaw-juggling acrobats sound like a lot of fun to all but your bank account. Moreover, a certain degree of simplicity in décor and entertainment may stand as indicators of the subtle taste of the host.
WHO? Dim the lights and mute the music! – People are the party. In determining your list of guests, inviting people of immediate relevance is equally as important as eliminating those with a high potential to ruin the event. Don’t you think that most weddings would be better off without the drunk neighbor knocking over the 7-tier cake? But in all seriousness, consider the age and the interests of the people attending. Some elderly people may have special dietary needs, while children will require to be entertained to stay out of trouble.
ENJOY. When all the planning is said and done, don’t forget to enjoy the event that you spent so much time creating. Some people will make the mistake of stressing through the entire day, and forgetting what the initial subject of the celebration is. At the end of the day, when balloons deflate and the cake is long gone, it’s the family and friends that make you feel the worth of your efforts.