Corporate events are a great way to get employees to interact with each other, whether for training, networking, or simple entertainment purposes. However, for a corporate event to be successful, it requires a lot of planning and organizing.
No matter what type of corporate event you host, corporate event planning requires a different strategy, mainly due to the nature of the event. So what exactly does corporate event planning entail?
This article covers the basics of corporate event planning to help ensure your next corporate event is a success.
What Is Corporate Event Planning?
Let’s start by explaining what exactly is a corporate event.
Simply put, a corporate event is any event sponsored and planned by a company for its employees. A corporate event may also include clients, potential clients, or others in the industry.
Corporate events can be as small as a team business dinner or as large as a company-wide holiday party. Regardless, specific planning is necessary for a successful corporate event.
You shouldn’t treat planning a corporate event the way you would planning a corporate meeting. You also shouldn’t treat the planning of a corporate event the same way you plan other events, especially ones open to the general public. Let’s take a look as to why that is.
Corporate Event Planning vs. Other Event Planning
Corporate events need their own kind of planning, which differs from how you would plan other events, such as a music festival or fundraiser. There are several key differences between typical events and corporate events that you should be aware of.
The main difference to keep in mind when planning a corporate event is the professional aspect. Although you should plan any event professionally, other public events may have more leniency.
A corporate event reflects on your company to those who matter the most — your employees. Therefore, you want to ensure that you represent your company through elements like the venue, entertainment, and the people representing your company at your event.
The goal of a corporate event differs from that of other events you would plan. For instance, corporate events are rarely for-profit and often focus on the company or the employees.
Let’s look at the different types of corporate events you can plan for your company.
Different Types of Corporate Events
A critical element in corporate event planning is understanding the type of corporate event you want to host.
There are many different corporate events, and the type you’re hosting determines your planning strategy.
A few common corporate events include:
- Business dinners: These events often have the simple goal of celebration.
- Networking events: Mixer events to meet others in the industry.
- Holiday parties: Happens before the holiday season in December.
- Charity events: Usually for the company to give back to and interact with the community.
- Seminars: Typically happens to deliver training to employees.
Once you know what type of corporate event you’re hosting, you can start planning. Let’s look at the general instructions on how to go about corporate event planning.
How to Plan a Corporate Event
Planning a corporate event may seem daunting, but if you remain organized and go in with a plan, you can pull off the perfect event that will leave a lasting impression on all.
To guide you, here are a few critical steps to planning a corporate event.
1. Figure out the goal of your event
Every event has a purpose, and this is especially true in a corporate setting. The first step in corporate event planning is establishing your event goals and objectives.
Consider these goals when planning a corporate event:
- Communicating a new company strategy
- Celebrating a milestone
- A general holiday celebration
- Welcoming a new member of the team
- Networking with other industry professionals and potential clients
Once you have the goal of your company event in place, you must stick to that goal and let it guide you throughout your planning.
2. Set an event budget
Chances are that your corporate event has a budget you must stick to. It’s essential to establish a realistic budget that will also help you plan a great event.
Establish a budget at the beginning before you do any planning to give you clear boundaries from the start and ensure maximum efficiency during your planning process. You should have a budget for:
- Event staff
- Event marketing
- Water (We’ve got you covered! Ask us about our Quenchy Buggy water trailers for your next corporate event.)
- Transportation (if applicable)
It’s crucial to stay on budget — especially for corporate events — as going over may require additional approval, which sets you back on planning time.
3. Find a location
The venue is one of the most critical aspects of event planning, especially corporate event planning. The venue you choose largely depends on the type of event you host.
For example, if you’re hosting corporate meetings during business hours, it may be most convenient for your employees to host this seminar at your headquarters.
In contrast, if you’re hosting a company-wide award ceremony, renting a banquet hall or reserving space at a restaurant may be better.
Either way, ensuring that your venue is accessible to your guests and that the space is large enough to accommodate your event is essential.
4. Promote to your guests
Once you have the logistics of your corporate event planned, it’s time to let your invitees know about it. Be sure to promote your big event well in advance to give your guests time to make plans.
If this event is solely internal, send emails and promote it around the workplace. If you’re inviting external guests, ensure that you have their contact information to ask them in the most practical way. When promoting your event, you should include essential information such as location and whether your event attendees can bring a plus one.
5. Evaluate the event’s success
Once your corporate event is done, you want to evaluate how it went — whether it was successful or wasn’t. Doing this will help guide the way you plan future corporate events and increase your success rate.
Ask your attendees for their feedback and suggestions for future events. Don’t forget to ask yourself if planning the special event was worth it. Maybe you loved event marketing or conference planning, or perhaps you’d rather hire an event planning service or corporate event planner next time.
Wrap Up: Corporate Event Planning for a Successful Event
Corporate events are crucial in building lasting professional relationships internally and externally. However, it takes good corporate event planning to execute an event successfully.
The best thing to do is to start planning your big event early and acquire resources as soon as possible to ensure everything goes smoothly. Hiring a corporate event planner can make event management a breeze if you still feel overwhelmed with the planning process.