Hello SOTGC community,
I know that I’m biased, but based on the feedback we’ve received, our wedding was a pretty “successful” event. Everyone had a great time and people are still mentioning it in conversation a month later. There are a few key lessons that I learned during the planning process that I will be mindful of when planning future events – whether they be networking events, formal business dinners, or a child’s birthday party.
- Know your audience. The majority of our guests were not Catholic so we chose to omit Holy Communion from our ceremony. Also we knew that about 15 percent of our guests were on gluten-free diets so we made sure to include gluten-free options at dinner. When entertaining professionally, try to get at least a general idea of your guests’ preferences and needs. Will they be flying in from a different time zone? Are they early risers or night owls? Do they drink alcohol or eat meat? Knowing some basic information may help you determine whether you should treat them to an early breakfast or an after-work cocktail party.
- Have helpers and delegate. I can’t imagine what we would have done at our wedding without the help of our coordinator and her team, not to mention the help we received from our bridal party and families. Having helpers allowed us to be free to mingle with our guests and enjoy a little quality time with each person rather than focus on logistics. Based on the feedback I received from guests, THIS is what left a lasting impression and made the night so memorable and special. If you are the only person in charge, it is almost certain that you will not be able to enjoy quality time with your guests because you will be consumed with logistics!
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. My grandfather has told me this all my life and it couldn’t be more applicable than when you are planning a big event! I have seen so many hosts and hostesses get so consumed with the details of the event that they cannot enjoy themselves and end up stressing everyone out. This is not the type of lasting impression that you’d like to leave. Guests likely won’t know if you have a blunder or two behind the scenes, but they will definitely notice if you are stressed out and that will put them on edge! Prior to hosting an event, allow yourself some freedom to go with the flow and improvise if things don’t go exactly according to plan. You may be surprised at how the unexpected can actually turn out better than the original plan.
Can’t get enough of SOTGC? Join the SOTGC Society by clicking on the link on the homepage of www.sotgc.com. If you have planned a successful event, let us know your secrets in the comment section below.