What would you do if a client calls and wants you to plan a party for 100 guests within a 2-week period? There can be many reasons for the last minute call. However, you find out that they tried to finish this task themselves and now they are running out of precious time. This can be easy or difficult to control. I have been asks to smooth out these events many times. Not that I am an expert in crisis management I find these projects to be fun. Why? Just remember you need a plan and work that plan for the event to run smoothly.
There are several steps that I take:
1- Always ask about the budget- This is as important for me as some projects cannot be completed with gold and silver if you have paper and string to work with;
2- What is the purpose of the event or party?;
3- Be honest and truthful with the client. You want to maintain your integrity and the quality of service that your company provides;
4- Listen-Listen-Listen to the client. They are in crunch time and need sincere help;
5- Learn to be creative as you may need to use pretty glasses instead of vases and even utilize some of the office items as decoration. Have you thought of creating flowers from old business cards and placing them on table stands as centerpiece decorations? Or turn paper clips into chains for that example of Networking 101?;
6- Paraphrase what you hear to ensure there is no misinterpretation of the conversation; and
7- Find out who is the decision maker of the project. Talking with individuals with little input or decision making can be a waste of time for all parties involved.
I find it encouraging to reply with positive answers instead of saying “NO that just will not work”. Why not say “Let’s rethink actually what you want and how it can be done”. Perhaps it is too late to have that perfect event; however, if you are the expert offer other suggestions that may work out. I replied to a client the other day to consider what is important and what is just a luxury proposal for the event? It now all starts to come together and the purpose of the party is now in clear view.
So let the planning start or give us a call so we can work together.