Wednesday, 02 September 2015

Five ways to take the stress of planning an event

Deborah Gensler

Planning an event needs preparation - especially when you are uncertain of where to start. Deborah Gensler, of Event Compass, has five steps to help you to structure your event planning, with some useful tips of what to avoid.

1. Keep it simple: The very first step is to establish a tangible event goal.Think about why are you organizing this event and what you hope to achieve. Who should participate and what is your expected return on investment? These are the essential building blocks for a successful event. Getting support from an event professional at this early stage would help in order to set your target and get your concept right.

2. Do your maths and set your budget: Setting a budget to work to is essential and sticking to it is absolutely critical. Focus on what you need and not what is easier to book. Experience counts.

3. Go Compare and be specific: Get several quotes. This is the only way to find out if prices are reasonable. Remember though, your budget is not a state secret. If you don’t reveal your budget, the supplier will offer you services, products or packages which you a) don’t need and b) don’t want to pay for. This causes more work for you as you have to review your request and start all over again. You would be surprised what suppliers can do if they know your budget limit.

4. Develop an action plan Be structured. That might sound very official, but the first steps of the event planning process are office based. If you have helpers or co-workers, put their names behind each task so you can follow up on them. Confirm everything via email. It is easier and quicker to call but if it isn’t written down, it didn’t happen.

5. Consider other options and get help: In my 10 years event management experience, I have met a lot of clients who wanted to do everything by themselves. And yes, if you have a good network, good supplier contacts and location knowledge, that works fine. But remember, there are many good event management companies out there who are willing to help. If your budget doesn’t allow an event agency, consider working with an event freelancer. You will avoid handling fees and mark ups.

And the most important thing to remember- enjoy yourself!

Need more information on Event Compass? Please call me at 07551 90 55 11 or email me deborah@event-compass-


  • If you want to take part in our Take Five feature and share your expertise contact Nick Turner on


Hot jobs

New vacancies


BBC News business headlines