How Do You Fix Venue Management Process Ailments?
It’s not a stretch to call the venue management process an art form. It requires you to craft and master skills, envision and construct a finished event and carefully develop and execute all of the steps that lead to a finished, polished product. One of the most important aspects of these responsibilities is to handle all of the unexpected situations and obstacles that inevitably arise; making the best out of each of them to ensure the ultimate success of the event. The secret to ensuring this success is truly understanding the in's and out's so you can properly navigate all of the common risks and challenges that are bound to pop up.
Like any other art form, you have to use the best tools and processes to mitigate risks and create masterpieces. You wouldn’t see Hollywood’s biggest stars filming movies with a flip-phone camera just like you won’t see the best event professionals handling unexpected obstacles with disorganized spread sheets and ineffective management processes. At the very core, event professionals are experts at organizing and managing every element of an event, and to be that, they need to effectively handle common industry ailments. Let’s take a look at a short list of things that can throw off an event or venue management process and discuss what you can do about it.
Things That Can Stress Your Venue Management Process
Ailment: Big last minute changes
Every event professional knows that minor, last minute changes are a staple of client behavior – it simply comes with the territory. However, what every event professional has nightmares about is clients demanding the kind of drastic changes that completely alter an event such as changing layouts, configuration or timelines the day of an event. These kinds of unpredictable issues can wreck an event, and a business relationship.
The Cure: The best way to reduce the risk of someone dropping major, unexpected changes on your plate is to paint your clients the clearest picture possible of how their event will be beforehand (painting a picture of an event - I told you this was an art form, right?). Do this by implementing an airtight, automated system with checklists and processes to monitor the exchange of information and communication. As changes occur and are requested, an airtight system also ensures that any and all of them recorded in Word, Excel or even on a napkin, are entered into a single database instead of some disconnected spreadsheet. This prevents a loss of information, and ensures things don’t slip through the cracks.
Ailment: The no-show
There’s few things more gut-wrenching for event managers than that moment when they’ve already waited longer than they should to acknowledge "They're not showing up." Who’s not showing up? It could be a lighting guy, an ops person, a caterer, a speaker, you name it! Venue managers are typically very organized; however they can’t organize everything for the people that they rely on and, well, things happen. But with so many different people involved in the execution of an event, it’s imperative to make sure that you can handle a few of them disappointing you.
The Cure: Manage all of these vendors and stakeholders from a single system and send out regular updates and reminders related to an event from this single location. Work to hold these people accountable and on a schedule; as it relates to your venue management process. Having a system to track changes and monitor stakeholder communication will allow you peace of mind when planning an event. Additionally, make sure that your communications don’t become too frequent or feel too spammy by targeting your communication specifically to those that are affected. If all else fails, have all of your event information right at your fingertips to see what staff and what resources are available to fill-in right away.
Ailment: The "yeah, that day is open" salesperson
Sales people love to say yes – and that’s a good thing! Having the resources available to meet a range of client requests is essential to great sales! But, this over-eagerness to say “yes” means that they often overlook the complexities around event operations. This can be a major issue if someone books an event at the last minute on an open day, but doesn't account for the logistics of how it might fit in with other events. For example, what if date X is simply listed as “open” and the requested event starts at 6am. Your salesperson will probably say “yes!” But suppose that the previous event was the night before and didn't finish until midnight – your salesperson may not be aware of the logistical nightmare they've just created and now you have a six-hour turnaround that can cost your venue a lot of overtime and additional money; not to mention exhausting your entire staff. It goes without saying that a situation like this probably won’t result in the kind of awesome event that your staff usually puts on.
The Cure: Have an integrated and personalized calendar and CRM system that allows your sales people to see conflicts and provides everyone on the team insight into recent bookings and conflicts that may occur. With everyone working from the same database, there’s no misunderstandings or miscommunications from department to department. A system that understands events and the events industry keeps all of your operations on schedule and in sync with each other.
Ungerboeck has been developing our software over 30 years of collaboration with industry professionals and want to help every potential client explore the many ways that they can improve their efficiency and better handle unexpected obstacles. When you’re ready to see just what Ungerboeck could do for you, contact me!
To Learn More About Managing A Venue Management Process:
- Read about an event coordinators greatest fears
- Learn about the art of coordinating a venue management process using technology