‘It always seems impossible until its done!’ So said Nelson Mandela.
At Church House, we are aware that an increasing number of Personal Assistants and Executive Assistants are being asked to organise events. Fewer organisations seem to be engaging people solely to plan their events and are giving this task to already overstretched members of the team. This means that organisers often have little or no experience and have no idea where to start. From their perspective, they can feel resentful of having been asked to do something they never signed up for and mild panic can set in.
But help is on hand. There are lots of checklists available online to help order one’s thoughts and set priorities. However, the best place to start is undoubtedly by asking the person who gave them the job to do what it is they are hoping to achieve by holding the event; is it an annual social occasion for all employees, a team away-day, the launch of a new product, a conference to discuss latest developments, an awards dinner, and so on. Once the intended outcome and expectations of the event are known, then it is time to choose the dates and event venue. The boss may very well recommend somewhere that they have used before and with which they are happy, so it is a case of confirming the preferred dates are available and going for a show round.
Once the organiser has come into the venue to meet with the Events Coordinator, this is when their life can become so much easier. No longer are they struggling alone with the task of organising the event; we are there to help every step of the way. We work with organisers on hundreds of events every year so we know the questions to ask, the information we need to ensure a client’s event goes well, and can recommend suppliers and make suggestions for possible improvements to make the event go more smoothly or enhance the presentation of the rooms. We also know people and how to put organisers at their ease. We can advise on event catering and audio-visual services and are always available to give advice all the way up to and during the event. By looking after all the practical details of staging the event and prompting at the appropriate times, we leave the organiser free to concentrate on the content of the day. We would urge all organisers to use the wealth of expertise on offer from the venue team. This advice is freely given as everyone involved in the delivery of each and every event wants it to be a success for all concerned.
This support continues on the day of the event, as we welcome the organiser and their guests, help them set up, ensure that all goes well during the day and help them pack up at the end.
And when the event is over, the PA/EA is able to take the credit for a successful event. They will wonder why they every doubted they could make it happen. They will have the satisfaction of having done a good job and what initially seemed impossible turned out to be possible. their confidence will have grown, and as we all know, confidence is one of the cornerstones of success and one of the most attractive qualities one can possess.
‘If you’re presenting yourself with confidence, you can pull off pretty much anything’ Katy Perry