Home Month and Year February 2024 Mastering Event Success

Mastering Event Success

Unveiling the true value of event planners

Glenn Carstens Peters. UnSplash.

Organizing a successful company event, whether it is a grand celebration or an intimate gathering, requires meticulous planning and execution. While some companies may consider handling event planning internally to save costs, the benefits of hiring a professional event planner often far outweigh the initial investment.

One of the main benefits of hiring an event planner is their wealth of expertise and experience in organizing a wide range of events. Professional event planners possess the skills and knowledge needed to handle every aspect of the planning process, from creating a comprehensive timeline to managing logistics and troubleshooting unforeseen issues. Their experience ensures a smooth and well-executed event, leaving companies free to focus on their core responsibilities.

While it may seem logical for smaller companies to plan their own events, MK Consulting Inc. owner Morgan Scott explains that even they can benefit from hiring an event planner. “Hiring an event planner is advantageous for both small and large companies. For small businesses with limited resources and a potential lack of in-house expertise, event planners provide essential support by efficiently managing logistics, saving time and offering industry knowledge. They enhance networking opportunities and allow the company to focus on core operations.”

“In the case of large companies, event planners bring specialized skills to handle the scale and complexity of major events, contributing to seamless execution and ensuring the company’s brand image remains positive. Their comprehensive planning, negotiation skills with vendors and ability to optimize costs make them invaluable in delivering successful, well-coordinated events. Overall, the decision to hire an event planner is a strategic investment that aligns with the specific needs and goals of both small and large companies,” says Scott.

Event planning is not a small job and involves coordinating with various vendors, venues and suppliers. An experienced event planner typically has a network of industry connections, allowing them to negotiate better deals, secure preferred rates and ensure the highest quality of services. This network can significantly contribute to cost savings, making the investment in an event planner a financially sound decision.

“Determining the worth of events depends on the cost-versus-value analysis, where larger companies and events often find the investment justified due to the comprehensive services and potential brand enhancement. The value derived from networking opportunities, professional execution and positive brand image often outweigh the costs for sizable events,” says Scott,

“Conversely, for smaller companies and events, evaluating the value for the cost becomes paramount. It necessitates a careful examination of the specific benefits an event can provide, ensuring that the investment aligns with the company’s goals and budget constraints. Ultimately, the decision on whether events are worth it depends on the unique circumstances of each company.”

Internal event planning is certainly not unheard of, and many companies still opt to plan their own events – whether large or small. However, it can lead to lost productivity as team members divert their attention from their regular duties to focus on event logistics. This can impact deadlines, project timelines and overall efficiency. By outsourcing event planning to a professional, companies can ensure that their team remains focused on their core responsibilities, maintaining productivity levels and preventing potential burnout.

“Deciding between paying someone externally to plan a company event versus utilizing internal resources involves weighing factors such as lost productivity. Opting for an external event planner can alleviate the burden on internal teams, ensuring specialized expertise, efficient coordination and a polished event outcome. While this incurs a cost, the investment may be justified by the time saved and the professional execution achieved,” says Scott.

“Striking the right balance depends on the nature of the event, the available internal expertise, and the trade-off between costs and the value of having dedicated professionals manage the intricacies of event planning.”

Calgary-based realtor Catherine Chow believes that events are essential to building relationships with her clients and says, “Companies should consider using an event planner if they are not seasoned in event planning, especially for larger functions.”

Chow echoes Scott’s comments and says, “Event planners can handle logistics, think of small details that could be missed, and know how to budget for events. They also have connections to performers and entertainment, making an event cohesive, especially if there is a theme.”

She recently planned a family-friendly client-focused bowling event using an event planner. “I used the Glencoe Club event planner for bowling, and she was able to select the wine menu appropriate for the time of year and number of guests. She also suggested an appropriate food menu and made sure the timing of everything was just right. One thing I know for sure is that timing is key when it comes to food service. Using an event planner allowed me to focus on the guest list and making meaningful connections with my clients and their friends and family.”

The attention to detail that Chow is referring to can make or break an event. Event planning requires meticulous attention to detail, and overlooking even small aspects can have significant consequences. An event planner’s thorough approach can make the difference between a mediocre event and a memorable one.

Partnership lead for Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre, Rob Moltzahn, says they hired Morgan Scott to help plan and execute the organization’s inaugural Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre/Red Deer Polytechnic Conference.

“I had not previously worked with an event planner. When planning events in the past, which were numerous in my previous work, I/we utilized the capital within the organization and put on the event with our own employees. This would always put tremendous strain on the organization, depending on the scale of the event being planned.”

Moltzahn says that using an event planner removed the pressure of having to plan a large-scale event. “In planning our inaugural conference, it was suggested that we consider an event planner. We proceeded with that decision and chose Morgan Scott, which ended up being one of the best things we did. She suggested and saw things that the committee simply didn’t because of her experience and acumen in event planning. We had a tremendous first ever conference that exceeded our expectations, and Morgan was a huge part of the success.”

“Without a doubt Morgan was a significant reason behind the success of our first event. Her expertise in set-up, ticket sales, advertising, planning and communication played a large part in the collective successful outcome our conference enjoyed. We were initially hoping for 100 participants and ended up needing to restrict registrations once we arrived at 300 participants. I believe that Morgan’s ability to quickly adjust to continual new numbers of registrants was a significant reason we were able to take on additional attendees. The very first decision we made for this year’s conference was to rehire Morgan to continue as our conference event coordinator.”

Hiring an event planner for events, whether big or small, offers a myriad of benefits that extend beyond cost considerations. The expertise, industry connections, and experience they bring to the table can lead to a more memorable and stress-free event. When evaluating the cost versus value, the investment in an event planner is often a wise decision that pays off in terms of efficiency, professionalism and overall event success.