To work with a corporate planner or do it yourself – that is the question. Certainly many will consider the DIY approach; but the benefits to hiring a professional far outweigh the savings. Some of these reasons are pretty obvious, for example, adding additional short term muscle that is experienced in the intriacies of event production. However, there are some others that might not be quite as obvious.
Time is Money (cue the Pink Floyd music)
One big reason to hire a corporate event planner is time. In our experience, our corporate clients are stretched thin as it is – assuming the role of event producer can add a considerable amount of additional time and effort to staff that are already underwater. By hiring a corporate planner who does this for a living day in and day out, you essentially are hiring extra arms, legs, and brains to do the work on your behalf. And the ‘cherry on top’ is you get the credit for that hired help.
Events LOOK easy – there’s a lot more complexity to a well run event than people realize. It’s much more about logistics and worst case scenario planning than it is the look & feel of it. Don’t get me wrong, look & feel is incredibly important, but what is most important is having a solid plan for hiccups that might happen. Like what? Like making sure you have a variety of cords & plugs if you’re planning to plug a laptop into a projector to present at an event. Like having extra microphones in case they don’t work.
In addition to worst case scenario planning, as much as some might assume it’s going to cost more, your event production team can also play a key role in making sure you’re not charged for unnecessary items – and you’re not overcharged for certain things. For one of our corporate conference clients, we were able to save them money by bringing in carpet, padding & a vacuum; which was going to cost them an astronomical amount if sourced through the convention center.
As veterans to the event planning and design industry, we come with a veritable rolodex of reliable contacts we can lean on and pull in when necessary. Quick turnarounds, tight budgets – we have sources that we know to contact even when the request is a genuine challenge. Like, when the roaming poet our client had hired – whom I had confirmed with earlier in the morning – didn’t show up and when I called him 15 minutes before the event start time to check on his absence, he confessed he was double booked (why he hadn’t mentioned that in the morning when we spoke is beyond me). I was able to call a friend who put me in touch with an alternative poet that arrived 30 minutes after the party started, and the client was none the wiser.
Next Level Concepts
As event planners, it is our job to keep a keen eye on the latest trends as well as clever concepts that we can incorporate into our client events. We are always on the look out for things that catch our eye; we like to call them ’shiny objects’. One example of this is the custom cowboy hat installation that we incorporated into the IndyCar Meets Music City event last year. It was such a huge hit with the guests and very apropos to the venue, the location, and the vibe.
A Little Kudos Goes a Long Way
In addition to the extra contract hours, a great corporate planner comes with years of expertise that you can rely on to not just create and execute your event, but to really wow you – your guests – and best of all, your senior leadership. A well run event can help the team responsible for the event in gaining exposure to the broader organization. As I write this, I think back to each of the corporate events we have produced – in every case our lead contact within the organization received significant kudos for the event experience. As a matter of fact, at least one person received a promotion shortly after our event collaboration.