Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Wrapping-Up an Event


And just like that it was over. Last Saturday was our annual BBQ festival. This is an event that is worked on all year ‘round and it is over in a day.

We have deemed this year’s festival a success. But with every success there is always room for improvement. After completing such a large event it is good to step back and look at the pros and cons of the event. What worked, what didn’t.

Feedback

As you plan an event you say phrases such as “I’m positive people will like _____”, now stop and laugh because that is not always the case. For example, in our food tent we thought guests will be more likely to order the pork sampler trays and maybe a few will order the brisket sandwiches. Well the sandwiches were very popular and we ran out of buns.

Getting feedback from volunteers is also really helpful because they see things that you don’t. However, be careful what you wish for. Taking constructive criticism is an important factor in planning an event. Everyone has an opinion. In this day in age they are more likely to share that unfiltered opinion on social media and handling those comments comes with every event. Sometimes comments are good, other times not so much. My issue is taking the comments personally, when you put so much in an event it becomes your baby and separating yourself from it can be tough but, necessary.

Follow-Up

Just because the event is over doesn’t mean it is finished. Following up with your volunteers, teams, and sponsors is the most overlooked part of an event. Letting these folks know that their participation is appreciated is such an important part of building that relationship with the community, not to mention future events.

A simple note or a thank you card can make a big difference. This is not an email or Facebook message. Break out that pen and card, because these should be handwritten notes that are mailed. Taking that extra time gives a personal touch to your message that doesn’t feel so copy & paste like. This “old school” move sets you apart and is something that isn’t done often enough.

Meeting

I love staff meetings! Not sure about my team, but I love ‘em! For me it is also a great chance to brain storm, get everyone on the same page, wrap up the event and begin working on the next. Yep, that’s right we are moving on to the next event. In a CVB we are constantly attending events or hosting them so once you catch your breath from one thing it is on to another. And that is one of the things I love most about this job! When you’re sick of talking about the BBQ Fest here comes the Bob Evan’s Farm Festival to get excited about!

As always thanks for reading!

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