Corporate Event Planning: Is It The Choice For You?
Leaving a full-time, well-paying corporate job to pursue a dream is never an easy choice. When an entrepreneurial hope is born, a brave, courageous spirit is born too--a will to accomplish the ‘impossible’.
When my friend, who was working as a human resource manager for years decided to resign from her job, I felt like she was saying a forever-NO to her self-made carefully-crafted-over-the-years career in HR; but she was very determined. Her idea was not to leave HR, but to project herself as an all-rounder in the business of communication and events. She started a company that plans and delivers events for corporations.
Her startup is relatively new, but she has already executed her second event within three months, successfully. Her idea is simple: Helping corporates unlock engagement, promotion and branding in the most economic way. My friend has a passion for sales and management and that has motivated her to launch this business.
There are many event planning companies in India that plan and manage parties, dinners, product launches, award ceremonies and other corporate events. These companies do not simply organize events; they design them too.
If you find the idea alluring, here are few things to consider:
A corporate event planning company takes ideas and presents a theme, finds a venue that is convenient and accessible, develops the decor, arranges for catering, staff, entertainment and everything that can make the event special and memorable. I call this a polymath business because of the versatility it offers.
This business is for you if you are ready to wear many hats all at once.
Salesman hat - You have to be really good in selling your services, and should have an expertise to bring in new clients.
Creative hat - To design the theme, décor and other arrangements at the events.
Accounting hat – You cannot go wrong with your budget, expenditure and expenses. After all, every dime you spend is part of your profit.
Control hat – To arrange and utilize logistics in the most efficient way.
HR hat - You have to hire and monitor staff to coordinate, present and execute the events.
Technology hat - You can save a big chunk of money if you can design brochures, flyers and online promotion websites by yourself, without having to hire an expert.
Marketing hat – Right from pricing and promotion till delivery, an event will need all your negotiation, management and planning skills to bring the most out of your efforts.
Planning to start it from home? Here are some more things to think about:
Approach it like a pro – You can work from almost anywhere as an event planner, but before you approach clients, get your website, email, work phone and flyers in place. Companies like to work with people who are serious about their work.
Arrange for storage – It might seem irrelevant for now, but once you are into business, there will be lot of things like banners, lighting, decoration, etc that makes sense to store and reuse.
Space for client meetings – You are right to think that you can walk into a client’s place for meetings. But at times, clients would like to visit and observe the company they are going to work with. If you do not have a dedicated office space at home, work out some suitable coffee shops, hotel or meeting places that are quiet and comfortable for business meetings.
Corporate event planning is different from personal events, as it means bigger events, a more diverse audience, larger budgets and higher risk. The idea is to develop and nurture relationships with clients, offer versatility, understand what the client is looking for and bring out the best purpose of the event.