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The Complete Guide to Planning a Successful Corporate Event

Friday, August 24th, 2018

What Is A Corporate Event & Where Do I Start?

Work related events can include a variety of different aspects of a business and starting to create or plan one is as easy as figuring out the type of event you’re interested in hosting. Knowing that there are various types of corporate functions is a major key to figuring out what you’ll do for yours. As someone who is planning one, you might be in charge of a lot depending on what you decide to do for yours, including but not limited to the following:

  • Team Building or Leadership RetreatsComplete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, teambuilding
  • Meetings
  • Product Launches
  • Employee Training
  • Trade Shows
  • Seminars
  • Focus Groups
  • Sales Meetings
  • Special Business Anniversary Celebrations
  • Board Retreats
  • Dinners & Awards Ceremonies
  • Holiday Parties
  • Corporate Hospitality & Client Entertaining
  • User Events & Conferences
  • Various Other Milestones

While you might be able to take on the event planning yourself, there are some other options that companies tend to go with. One of the popular options is to hire an event planning company. With one of these companies, the difficult work is taken out of the equation to allow for the simplistic decisions to be made by you (or whoever is in charge) while the planning company does the legwork. Another option some people tend to go with is having a person or even an entire department on hand to handle any event planning the company might need. If the company is a larger company that hosts numerous events, there might even be a team in charge of handling these responsibilities regularly.

Why Hold an Event?

There are various reasons to have a corporate event and they’re all valid. So whether you’re looking to change the way your customers view the business or trying to motivate some serious press coverage, there really is no wrong answer. Holding a successful event is going to take a lot of working parts but ultimately, it’s going to pay off in the end. With this being said, there are numerous other reasons to have a corporate event, so let’s go over them.

Some people opt to host their event for the purpose of making a single person happy. This person, obviously, is usually their boss. When the boss is happy, the employees are happy, and if there is a chance for something good to come your way as a result of hosting a successful business- related event, that’s all the more reason to make it happen. With this being the case, making the boss happy is not the only reason to work towards hosting a successful event.

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, teamworkThere are times that hosting can become appealing because of all it can do for marketing efforts. When you do a function the right way, it has the potential to go as far as creating press coverage! At the very least, you’re looking at some serious social media coverage stimulation, bringing numerous eyes to the business and making the company look good. A successful event also has the potential to provide some support to some of your line marketing activities as well, making it even more appealing.

A successful corporate function also has the potential to change customers’ perceptions of the business. For example, if this is a used car lot and you’re hosting a BBQ in honor of veterans, you’re going to assist in molding the customers’ perceptions of the business in a way that shows it as a business that cares about the people protecting their customers. Ultimately, this can alter the perception your hiring manager molded last month when he was on the local news for assaulting a customer, showcasing that a successful corporate event can be a serious miracle worker when it comes to changing the perception customers have of the business.

Hosting a successful event can also impact employees at all levels of the business in a positive manner as well. From assisting in getting the entire team to bond to motivating your sales personnel, you’ll find that hosting a successful function can have an impact with ripples that are felt throughout the company. Some people even use events for the purpose of entertaining their managers and executives. With so many positive impacts being derived from hosting a successful event, it’s no wonder why so many businesses opt to put forth their own efforts at one.

Making Goals

First and foremost, when making the goals for your event, you’re going to want to make sure that they are closely related to what the company needs. This means focusing on the company’s mission and economic health. Once these considerations are taken, you’ll want to make sure that the function is going to satisfy some need of the company. Whether the company needs to unite its employees, motivate and reward its managerial staff, or impress upper-level employees, these considerations need to be considered as you plan. With this in mind, it is recommended to write down your goals to allow yourself to keep them in your thoughts as you continue planning.

Setting Your Budget

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, setting budgetSetting a budget is going to have a major impact on how your planning goes. This is the money you’re allocating for the entirety of the event and before you begin making decisions, you’re going to want to come up with a realistic budget to adhere to. Knowing your budget will either limit you or provide you with the freedom you’re looking for as you plan your event. With this being the case, setting your budget and sticking to it is imperative to your event’s success as it is virtually impossible to make any decisions pertaining to the event without having a budget in place.

While making your budget, there are a few things you’ll want to consider. Knowing how much you are capable of spending and how much you’d like to spend will definitely come in handy, but you’ll also want to consider how much you’ll need to spend. If your company’s pockets are limitless, your options are endless. But if you find that your company needs to craft a budget that is simply for the essentials, then you’ll have to think about the costs associated with your function. This can involve conducting some research on what you need and how much you can expect to spend. There are times that the event might not even be possible as a result of the lack of a proper budget. With this in mind, knowing what kind of budget you have to work with is a major step to take prior to planning.

Choosing The Location

Once you have a budget, you’ll know how much money you’re working with. At this point, you’ll want to choose a location. While some people opt to host their event at their office or on company grounds, those with a more extravagant budget have the option to choose another place to have it. With this in mind, if you have the budget for it, you’ll want to find the perfect place to have your party. As you choose the location, there are several things you should consider, including:

  • Can we afford to have the event here?

    • The cost of the venue is ultimately going to play a role in whether or not you’re going to be able to host your event there. While having a bigger budget definitely increases options, it doesn’t always mean spending more money will provide you with the right kind of location.
  • Is the location appropriate for the event?

    • Some venues can be incredibly loud or quite the opposite. If you’re hosting a dance party, you’re likely going to want to host it at a nightclub or in an auditorium with a dance floor. But if you find that you’re going to be having a meeting that you’ll need a quiet atmosphere, you might want to find a different location.
  • Is the location convenient for the guests to travel to?Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, setting venue

    • Distance is definitely going to play a role in choosing the location because some people are not going to want to travel far to attend the gathering. Keeping your guests in mind, make sure you choose a location that your guests will be willing to travel to.
  • Does the location have everything needed for the event?

    • There are times in which an event is planned at a place without taking the needs of the event into consideration. Knowing that the location will have enough outlets, a microphone to speak to guests, etc. is imperative when choosing a location, so it is important to keep these things in mind as you plan.

Brisbane council are doing their best to make event planning in the city as easy as possible, they’ve put together a pretty solid directory of venues in Brisbane, popular with business functions. Find it here: http://brisbaneeventplanner.com.au/Listings/Venues

Deciding On A Theme

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, deciding themeWhile not all successful business functions have a theme, deciding on whether or not it will have one is important for it. If you decide to have a theme, it is important to make sure it radiates throughout the entirety of the party. A theme is a great way to provide your guests with the entertainment they need to feel comfortable. It has the potential to really open up your guests to one another, allowing them to have the good time you’re hoping everyone has. With this being the case, there are a few things to consider when coming up with a theme:

  • Understanding your audience means knowing precisely what they expect from you. If your audience is going to be full of people who are rather serious, choosing an appropriate theme for them is going to be a major key in winning them over. While themes can be fun, there is nothing worse than incorporating an inappropriate theme as this has the potential to embarrass you, your company, and your guests.
  • Conduct some research to find out what kinds of themes previous events within your company had. This can provide you with the insight you need to find an appropriate theme that will entertain your guests. Furthermore, this will make sure that you don’t use a theme that the company used in the past, boring your guests and embarrassing yourself in the process.
  • Choose a theme that stands out. By choosing a brilliant theme, you’ll assist your guests in creating some memories that they’ll never forget. These memories will be linked to the purpose of your event, making it a successful corporate event in the fact that you are getting your guests to enjoy themselves while taking away what you’re looking to give them.

Going Over The Catering Options

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, private chefWith any successful corporate event, you’re going to want to incorporate catering. This being said, there are various options for catering and it is important to impress the guests. When you put forth your best food through catering, you’re concreting the event in the attendees’ minds, ensuring an extremely successful corporate event. There are various options when it comes to catering your company function and understanding them is ultimately going to help in your pursuit of success in this venture.

Private Chef

Hiring a private chef is one of the better catering options if you’re hosting a corporate event that is rather close-knit. With this in mind, a private chef is going to be able to create the fresh meals you want to provide your guests. This assists in creating an upscale vibe that ultimately will contribute to making your guests feel beyond welcome. A great aspect of hiring a private chef for the catering is that you’ll be able to suit any dietary preferences the guests might have as well, allowing a totally customizable menu that is prepared fresh! Have a read through some more handy tips for hiring a pro caterer for your shindig here.

Interactive Gourmet Food

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, gourmet foodWith the popularity of gourmet food skyrocketing, it’s easy to see that any successful corporate event is going to incorporate it into the catering options. One of the most raved about options is the Hibachi station, but no one can say no to fresh sushi! With interactive gourmet food catering, you’re going to find that you’ll get the level of sophistication you’re looking for at your corporate gathering, ultimately adding to and enhancing it in a way that your guests will surely appreciate.

Buffet Style

Everyone loves good buffet style catering at a corporate event, making this one of the better catering options you can go with. An important factor here is to make sure you’re hiring good food catering for the event. There is nothing worse than a cold and stale buffet, making it important to know of successful corporate events that the company has catered for with their buffet style option. If you need some menu inspiration, check out our set menus here.

Mixologists/Adult Beverages

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, drinksHaving a professional bartender on hand to make incredible mixed signature drinks crafts an unforgettable atmosphere at corporate events. Some people opt to hold classes teaching their employees how to craft these drinks, but going a bit further to simply provide these tasty adult beverages to your guests is going to bring forth a level of satisfaction and comfort that can result in a successful professional function like no other.

Niche Snackage

Choosing to go with niche snacks for your catering is going to bring some happiness to your guests. With these snacks, you might spend a little more money, but the impact they’ll have on your guests is immense. Presenting niche options at a corporate event can result in countless pictures and shares on social media as well, making it so choosing to have the unique pretzel bar or the slider bar a major upgrade to any event.

Choosing Activities For The Guests To Enjoy

While the venue you choose might have the activities already included, if it doesn’t, you’re going to have to come up with some interesting activities to keep the guests entertained. Ultimately, the activities you include are going to depend on the purpose of your corporate event. Here is a list of corporate events and some activities you could include.

  • Team Building Event

    • If you’re working with a team-building event, you’re going to want to incorporate some fun team building activities to place emphasis on the importance of coworkers. With this being the case, these activities will be focused on teamwork. For instance, some activities you can include are relay races, trust falls, office trivia, community service, or even a campfire.
  • Customer Appreciation Event

    • Hosting a customer appreciation event means highlighting the company’s love for the customers. If the customers have children, it’s nice to have something for them, such as face painting or a clown. The option for the customers to have fun is also available, with contests, giveaways, and even raffles being tremendous motivators of fun for adults.
  • Employee Motivation Event

    • Corporate events that place emphasis on the employees having fun are always a good time. The activities you can include in your event vary, but some great examples include kayaking, horseback riding, Segway experiences, or having a disco yoga event.

These activities will depend of course on the size of your group. You could also incorporate an activity prior to the main event. Brisbane has plenty of cool teambuilding activites perfect for this type of occasion – Here’s a solid list to get you started.

Promoting The Event

While expecting everyone to show up to your event is somewhat unreasonable, making sure everyone knows about the event is definitely something you’ll want to do. Fortunately, the era we live in encourages communication in various ways across a multitude of platforms, facilitating the spreading of information that can certainly include information regarding your corporate event. Hosting a successful corporate event means successfully promoting it, meaning you’ll want to take advantage of numerous medians and outlets to get your information out to the masses.

One of the most popular ways to promote is through social media. It’s a fast method and easy to reach countless people through its utilization, making it one of the best methods around. You can share the party publicly if it is open to everyone or privately via private message if you’re only interested in inviting certain people. Regardless of which you choose, various social media platforms will facilitate the process of getting your promotion in front of the eyes you’re looking for.

Complete Guide To Planning A Successful Corporate Event, promoting event

Another option is to print out invitations. While this is a retro method, it definitely works. If you have your guests’ addresses, that’s ideal, but the invitations could get lost in the mail. Handing the invites out in person is also a good idea. If your company has mailboxes for employees, that can also work.

If the party is going to be open to the public, finding sponsors is also a good idea. Sponsors can get the word out to anyone who is paying attention to them, expanding your reach as far as they reach (and perhaps even further!). This has the potential to give your event the free publicity you’re looking for while ensuring the sponsorship obtains the publicity that it’s looking for from your guests. Ultimately, this will be a win-win for all parties involved and it’s as easy as reaching out in search of a sponsorship.

Having The Successful Corporate Event You’re Dreaming Of

While this might be your first time planning a corporate event, there is no reason why it should not become the successful corporate event that you’re hoping for. Even if you’re a total newbie at hosting corporate events, it is definitely possible to ensure that everything is going to go in your favor as you plan this event. Regardless of your reasons for planning a corporate event, with this advice, planning your successful corporate event will be facilitated, taking a bit of stress out of your mind and making the entire process that much easier for you. If you feel like you need a hand, do give us a call – We’re regarded as Brisbane’s premier corporate caterers, with over 15 years in the game. One of the most important aspects of hosting a successful corporate event is to ensure that you don’t get overwhelmed while you’re planning. While this can be difficult, knowing the process and steps that come with it will ultimately make you that much more successful in your endeavor.

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