A well-thought and -executed theme breathes life into your entire experience and runs through every element of your event. It sets the tone for what attendees can expect, from the venue to the invitations. Whether it’s a full-blown gala or annual corporate meeting, consider your theme as part of your event strategy to tie everything together and generate engagement.
- TV, books and movies
Pop culture is one of the best sources for event themes. Look no further than your Netflix account or bookshelf for ideas! Try: Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Great Gatsby or Alice in Wonderland.
- Revisit a decade or era
Tap into nostalgia with a theme centered on a specific decade or milestone in history. You can event look to the future for inspiration. Try: the 90s (think Friends, grunge rock), the Roaring 20s, Pop art or Disco.
- Pull up the curtain
Nothing transports us to another world like a great performance. Whether it’s music, art or magic, your attendees will be left breathless. Try: Circus, Jazz Club or Awards Show themes.
- Bring the city to you
Put a twist on the classic Paris-themed event with exotic and unconventional city themes. There are infinite ways to evoke iconic cities and bring their unique flavors into the room. Try: New Orleans, Mumbai or Havana.
- Opposites attract
When you throw together polar opposites, you’ll find great theme ideas. Play up your chosen paradox in the event colors, entertainment, and food. Try: Black and White, Fire and Ice or Heroes and Villains.
Need help with your next corporate gala? Talk to the experts. Contact us at (866) 337-7799 or bd@AmericanMeetings.com.
With corporate meeting and event spend increasing, Corporate Galas are coming back in to fashion. CMO, Todd Bludworth says, “Planning for a corporate gala is often considered secondary to larger priorities, and key details can be easily overlooked creating an embarrassing faux pas for corporate meeting planners and organizations alike.” Galas often have many different features that can add to the stress of planning such as sponsors, auctions and entertainment. In addition, dealing with vendors, meals, special accommodations, etc. can be a challenge as well. Here are some areas to think about for corporate event planning galas that can make your event planning less stressful:
- Plan early! In order to secure a popular venue, be sure to sign the contract well in advance. Most venues can book up to a year ahead. Start now for next year’s event.
- Pad your budget. Plan for unexpected expenses that may occur such as unexpected gratuities or taxes or the last minute decision to keep the bar open for an additional hour.
- If you are sending out invitations, make sure to send them roughly eight weeks in advance. If the event is in high demand, or during a holiday, you may want to also send “Save the Date” cards a up to six months in advance.
- Create a seating chart. Putting together a seating chart will ensure the right social mix at each table and allows you to maximize key relationship-building.
- If you would like good attendance at your event, try to schedule it for earlier in the week and away from major holidays. Most people have plans during the weekends and travel during the holidays.
- When planning any type of event you should always have an emergency or contingency plan in case of a disaster, rain with an outdoor event, illness, or any other type of emergency that may occur. It sounds logical, but you would be surprised how often this is overlooked.
Good luck with your corporate gala! Few events instill such pride and excitement as these corporate functions, and they can have a positive impact on the morale of your organization for months after the program.
CEO, Andy McNeill, talks to Insurance & Financial Meetings Management Magazine about how gala events set
the stage for delivering your message in an powerful and inspiring atmosphere. This article discusses the many ways in which event planners and their clients use the gala event to boost corporate morale, show appreciation for employees and clients and build lasting relationships.