How to Staff an Amazing Events Team

How to Staff an Amazing Events Team

As the event host, you’ll play a major role in planning and managing the event, and you’ll have your hands in every aspect of operations from beginning to end.  That said, no one is an island, and you can’t expect to pull off a truly spectacular meeting or convention without a bit of assistance.

You’re going to need a reliable team of experts to manage the various facets of transforming your vision into a successful event.  You need coverage for areas where you have no expertise.  Even if you’re organized and you have a big-picture mentality, you might not know a lot about logistics, technology, décor, customer service, or other integral aspects of making your event a success.

This is where an amazing events team comes into play.  With the right staff on hand to pick up the slack, you can delegate essential tasks to professionals who can handle them, leaving you free to focus on the aspects of planning and managing an event that fall in your wheelhouse.  Here are just a few of the key positions you’ll want to populate with qualified individuals.

Convention Planner

Even though you have the ultimate say in how planning progresses as the host of the event, a professional convention planner can help you to get all of your ducks in a row.  Those who specialize in meeting and event services can help you nail down the details for every aspect of event planning, from branding and promotion, to attendee recruitment and registration, to presentations and technologies, to vendor discovery and contract negotiation, to overall management and follow-up.

Says Tessa Cameron VP of Strategic Sourcing at AMI, “Think of your convention planner as the foundation for a successful event, the base that all the other pieces of your team are built on top of.  This is the first person you’ll want to bring on board when you’re planning an event.  This is the person who can help you put together all the pieces.”

You’ll also need administrators to head up different areas of the event planning and management process.  These professionals will report to you and your event organizer and take some duties off your plate.

Creative Coordinator

Your convention planning team will consist not only of people who handle logistics, but also those who come up with innovative design ideas suitable for your brand and your event.  The creative team will be involved with marketing and promotions for your event, brand imaging at every level (website and social media, as well as print materials at the event), media for presentations, and design and décor for your event.

Everything from event maps, to logos, to banners and kiosks could fall to the creative coordinator and his/her team to create.  Although you’re likely to have some ideas about the design process and your event organizer will probably have suggestions, as well, you really need a creative team in place to bring your vision to life.

Tech Director

There’s no denying the importance of technology in modern day events.  Event the simplest meetings and presentations will benefit from audio/visual elements, and you can use technology in ever-increasing ways to improve logistics, engage your audience, and add convenience to every facet of your event.

Your technical director can help you not only determine which technologies are suitable for your event, but also how to implement upgrades and even find partners in creating custom software or apps for your events.  Whether you want to set up kiosks with tablets featuring interactive displays or you plan to provide all event info and an easy means of event registration via app, you’re going to need a professional that understands the benefits and challenges of working technology into your events.

 

Head of Security

You might not necessarily have to hire this important team member – many venues that host big events already have their own security staff in place or they outsource to a local provider for security details.  If you happen to have an experienced security professional on staff that you trust, he/she can act as a liaison with on-site security personnel to create a plan than ensures safety for event attendees.  Your convention planner can also help you to find security experts as needed.

 

Event Organizer Recommendations

If you’re relatively new to event planning or you’re hosting an event overseas (where laws and expectations are different), you might not even know what types of people you’re going to need to pull off your event.  The good news is that an expert event organizer has the knowledge to guide you through and a network of contacts to tap into for assistance or advice.

How to Simplify Staffing at Your Events

How to Simplify Staffing at Your Events

Once your event is in full swing, you and your global meeting planner will have a lot of priorities to attend to.  The last thing you need is to find yourself micromanaging a disorganized event staff.  You need a reliable team you can delegate simple tasks to so you have the bandwidth to focus on more pressing concerns.

Of course, part of how well your staff performs relates to the overall complexity of the training and directives you provide.  If your staff scheduling is a nightmare and you fail to clearly assign posts and duties, staff confusion is to be expected.

Says Josie Rubio, Director of HR & Global Talent Acquisition at AMI, “If you want your staff to perform like a well-oiled machine, you have to create a simple and streamlined plan so that every team member knows where they’re supposed to be when they’re supposed to be there, and what they’re supposed to be doing.”

How can you and your corporate meeting planner ensure that your staff is well prepared to best serve event attendees?  Here are a few tips to simplify staffing concerns at your upcoming event.

Have Your Corporate Meeting Planner Suggest Posts

Once you have your venue locked down and a clear plan of where meetings, presentations, and exhibits will take place, it’s time to sit down with your corporate meeting planner to determine where best to place staffers throughout your event space.

You’ll need registration staff and team members posted throughout the venue to direct attendees and provide assistance.  You might also need staffers posted at doors to check badges, people assigned to act as ushers for presentations, and professionals that can man food and beverage stations, activity booths, and other service locations.

Knowing ahead of time where you’ll need to strategically place staff members can help you to secure the right volume of staff and select professionals that have the experience and personality to excel in their assigned position.

Simplify Scheduling as Much as Possible

Every event presents challenges for the host, global meeting planner, and staff members, and to some extent, you might need to compensate on the fly.  However, it’s best to create a firm schedule for staffing ahead of time.  What if someone doesn’t show up or a staffer needs to leave their post for an unscheduled restroom break?

Your best bet is to have a backup plan, such as a couple of extra team members that can act as runners or fill in as needed.  A well-planned schedule and extra staffing can help you to optimize the usage of event staff and ensure that no post is ever left unattended.

Ask Your Global Meeting Planner to Streamline Maps and Itineraries

Event attendees are certain to approach staff members with questions, and some of the most common will focus on the timing and location of activities.  You and your corporate meeting planner can prepare for this by providing staffers with maps and itineraries and going over them before the event begins.

A good bet is to offer attendees maps and itineraries via the app so they have their own copies, but giving staff members hard copies is also wise since it can help to make their jobs a lot easier and account for potential snafus like a low battery on devices or in-app crashes.