Ever heard the saying, “the Devil is in the details” before? It definitely holds true for corporate meetings, events, and conferences. It’s the little things that can turn a good event into a great one or a boring corporate meeting into one that attendees will be talking about for months. Meeting planners and those in charge of the event have so many details they’re juggling, it’s no wonder that some of those pesky little tasks fall through the cracks. Maybe it’s outside of your normal planning checklist or time just gets away from you. It happens to the best of us! But have no fear! Our team of meeting and event planning experts is here to share some of those last-minute, tiny details you may be forgetting. Add these to your event planning checklist and you’re sure to be the company hero.
A strong Internet connection is important and probably top of your meeting and event planning checklist. However, don’t forget about internet bandwidth too! Internet“bandwidth” and “speed” are sometimes used interchangeably, but they’re actually different. Bandwidth measures the capacity of an internet connection while speed measures how fast data is transferred. While the venue for your corporate event might have fast internet speeds, other groups or attendees using the connection can use up all the bandwidth and cause poor internet performance. Be sure the internet connection is ready to handle the needs of presenters, speakers, and attendees at your corporate event, meeting, or conference.
2. Parking logistics.
While you’re probably checking to make sure there’s enough parking for everyone, many meeting planners and event organizers forget details beyond that. Here are a few additional parking-related details to consider:
- If large numbers of people will be arriving or leaving at the same time, it may be helpful to have people directing traffic.
- If there’s a charge or permit required for parking, be sure and communicate that with guests ahead of time to avoid confusion and traffic congestion on the date of your corporate event.
- If parking is not close to the event venue, a shuttle or valet service is typically a great idea.
- Double-check any local parking restrictions and regulations and share them with attendees if necessary.
3. Food allergies & diet restrictions.
As people are becoming more health-conscious and dealing with a variety of dietary issues, planning the menu and refreshments for your company’s meetings and events is more important than ever. While it’s common to offer a vegetarian option, you may also want to consider gluten-free, vegan, and kosher guests, as well as common allergies, like nuts and seafood. For many, these are more than just options, it’s a medical necessity and could be a life and death situation. Allowing guests to note dietary restrictions ahead of time and working with your caterer to provide a variety of options can help assure all guests are comfortable and included.
4. An emergency kit
There’s always going to be little “emergencies” that pop up at your corporate event. Maybe your keynote speaker spills on his or her shirt, an attendee gets a papercut or migraine, or you need a last-minute sign. It happens! The best corporate meeting and event planners are the ones that are prepared for anything and ready to save the day. A well-stocked emergency kit comes in handy when these types of issues pop up. A few office supplies and beauty items you may want to include are:
- Pens and sharpies
- Notepad or sticky notes
- First aid kit with bandaids
- Stain remover
- Lint roller
- Pain reliever
- Extra batteries
- Glasses wipes/cleaners
- Bug spray and sunscreen
Of course, this is just the beginning. A lot of what you put in your event emergency kit may change depending on what the venue provides and the type of event your hosting. Always plan for the worst — you’d be amazed at what “emergencies” can be avoided with a little preparation.
5. Outlets and charging stations.
When touring the event space for your company gathering, be sure to take note of how many plug-ins there are and where they’re located. With everyone bringing laptops, chargers, and other electronics nowadays, you’re going to need plenty of plug-ins. The last thing you want is for a speaker or attendee’s computer or tablet to die in the middle of a big presentation. Work with the venue and be sure to bring plenty of power strips, extension cords, and extra phone or computer chargers. Your guests, vendors, and volunteers will appreciate being able to power up and stay fully-charged throughout the event.
When mobility and access isn’t an issue for you, it’s easy to forget about. However, it’s incredibly important. You want to be as inclusive as possible to all guests across the spectrum. Even things like narrow door frames and high-top tables can be problematic for guests who use wheelchairs. At minimum, make sure the event space meets ADA standards. If possible, allow attendees to request specific accommodations in a private, confidential way and go above and beyond to meet their needs. Remember, disabilities and mobility issues aren’t always seen and improved accessibility benefits everyone.
This one is a given, but often overlooked when dealing with all the other aspects of planning a corporate meeting or conference. It’s not enough just to make sure there are bathrooms on-site. You’ll want to make sure that there are enough bathrooms to accommodate your guests and that they’re stocked with toilet paper and other necessities before the event begins.
8. Online engagement.
Did your company’s event even happen if it wasn’t shared on social? Online engagement is huge and it’s a crucial aspect of corporate event planning nowadays. It’s a common way that guests engage, ask questions, and share feedback — especially during larger gatherings like fundraisers, conferences, and retreats. You should at least have someone monitoring your company’s accounts and engaging online before, during, and after. Depending on the event, social media, an app, your website, and other online tools can help you promote your event, gather valuable feedback from attendees, and keep guests engaged.
9. Nursing moms.
Don’t forget that some of your attendees may be new moms. They’ll appreciate a small, private area to slip away when they need to breastfeed or pump. Be sure to double-check with your event venue to see if they have a designated space available.
10. Follow up
After all the stress of planning an event, it’s easy to forget that it’s not over once the guests leave. Post-event duties and follow-up tasks are just as important as meeting, conference, or fundraiser itself. Be sure you’re following up with your team, guests, volunteers, and vendors to get feedback to improve your next corporate gathering. That may include sending out surveys, calling a quick meeting, or even reading through online reviews and comments. You’ll want to continue building upon the relationships and insights you and your team gained during the event.
Ready to plan your next event?
If you’re planning a company meeting, conference, retreat, or holiday party in the Lake Tahoe area, we’d love to be a part of it. With flexible meeting space, delicious catering options, and picturesque views of the stunning Lake Tahoe landscape, there’s really no better place to hold your next event. Check out this video to learn more about what Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel offers corporate meeting and event planners and contact us today to get started.