Event planning – where do you start?

Business Operations

Whether you are holding a big or small event, your planning will follow the same general pattern, these are some of the key items to consider.

Ensure you have a clear objective on what your event is to achieve:

  • Will it raise your profile to your target market?
  • Are you aiming for networking, future business, fundraising or to have some fun?
  • To raise awareness for a new product?

Ensure you plan your event well in advance:

  • Venues can be difficult and expensive to source at short notice
  • Make sure it does not clash with a similar business event or national holiday
  • Send out a ‘hold the date’ invite with brief details

Teamwork and delegation

  • Have a small core planning group with responsibility for the event, with additional volunteers to help out on the day.
  • Be clear about what the roles and tasks are, and who is doing what
  • Ensure publicity and communications are covered, use social media to reach a wider audience
  • Use a project planner to ensure all items are covered and allocated to a team member

Stick to your budget, some of the items to include are likely to be:

  • Venue hire
  • Technical equipment
  • Catering and catering staff
  • Publicity, including printing of event packs, photography and filming
  • Hire of equipment
  • Speakers
  • Insurance
  • Fees for licences and permissions

You should also think about:

  • Health and Safety/First Aid
  • Transport to the venue or can it be easily reached by public transport
  • Accessible venues/interpreters
  • Photography or filming of the event
  • Insurance, for example, public liability
  • Permissions and licences
  • Hire of equipment

On the day – take a deep breath and go for it!


Remember to thank your volunteers and helpers, and report back to and thank funders, sponsors.

It’s always worth having a brief discussion with your group after an event is over, to talk through what went well and not so well on the day, and draw lessons for future events.

Good Luck!


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