Our first “Tuesday Tips” entry comes from Operations Manager Rachelle Kirchner. Rachelle has been with The Event Team for almost a year, moving swiftly up the company ladder due to her great people skills and attention-to-detail (must-have qualities for Operations Managers at The Event Team). Rachelle is great at thinking on her feet, so we asked her:
How to Avoid an On-Site Event Crisis:
1. Communication, Communication, Communication! This is the single most important aspect of any event. As the on-site contact, you are the communication center. All questions will be coming through you whether you know the answer or not, so be prepared to communicate quickly and effectively. Become an expert of all forms of communication (email, telephone, face-to-face, Nextel/Walkie-Talkie). Print out important email exchanges and have them easily accessible for reference onsite. Keep a notebook with you to jot down important information on the fly. Learn the nuances of communicating with staff vs. vendors vs. clients. Also remember that listening and absorbing is just as important as making yourself heard. You are the communication faucet and sponge. Practice your skills in both giving and receiving information; they are essential for a successful event!
2. Know the Players and their Roles. Do you know who will be coming by to drop the linens and at what time? Did you call the band not once but several times to confirm they haven’t double-booked your date? Do you know the names & numbers of the drivers assigned to your transfer? Do you know if your catering point of contact will be joining you onsite or sending a banquet manager? At the event, do you & your staff know where the CEO is at all times? You better answer yes to all of these (and many more) questions!
3. Have ALL Cell Phone Numbers Readily Available. At The Event Team, we put together a multi-page document called the On-Site that outlines every single moment of each event. It is our event bible and we carry it with us everywhere we go. We share On-Sites with our President, the program Sales Manager, the event staff and even Hotel CSMs if applicable. The most important page of this document is one that lists contact information for EVERY SINGLE person involved with the event in ANY CAPACITY. Name, email address, office number, cell phone number, ex-wife’s number, favorite color, social security number, etc. Well, we don’t get that carried away but you get the idea.
4. Be on the Move! Throughout the event make sure you are constantly checking on and watching guests, staff and vendors so everyone remains happy. Not only will you have a handle on the event, but guests, staff and vendors will know that YOU are the one to come to with questions, thereby avoiding unnecessary mix-ups or miscommunications.