I plead guilty to enjoying a cold beer or two, and I’ve watched with amazement as the decade-long bull market in the craft beer industry shows no signs of abating.
It’s holiday event time for businesses, and as an early holiday present, Cassie Brown, Chief Experience Officer at TCG Events, shares the top five words you should hear from your event planner:
Vision: The right event planner asks you the right questions to create an event that accomplishes your company’s goals – so that it’s not just a generic “pretty” holiday party. What is your goal for this event? Who is your audience – employees only, or are you inviting clients and prospects as well? If this is an annual occasion, what did you do last year – what worked and what didn’t?
Timing: Your event planner should talk with you about the ideal timing for your holiday party. That might be January – traditionally a more relaxed time for employees. This is especially valuable if you’re hoping this event will encourage team bonding; your employees are likely to be less distracted, more able to focus on one another and the company. It’s also a cost-cutting move, as many vendors have more pricing flexibility in January. Another option: a lunch or weekday party, instead of weekends or evenings, so that more of your invitees might be able to join in the festivities.
Location: Have you traditionally rented an outside venue for your company’s holiday party? Consider holding the event at the CEO’s home. A home can provide a very intimate and welcoming setting and can demonstrate team commitment from the company’s leadership. Review the home options with an event planner; collaborate on your vision for the event and rely on their expertise to inform you of what’s possible.
Food (specifically, presentationand selections): No one wants to be stuck at a table all night with eight people they may or may not like. Your event planner should offer some creative options, including family-style serving, to encourage conversation. Food that’s an “experience” is a terrific way to make this year’s event stand out – TCG Events has created experiences ranging from make-your-own-dessert stations to champagne served by an upside-down aerialist. The end result: even more opportunities for networking and a higher overall energy level for the event.
Last but not least – Music! Are your licenses in place? Music played publicly is required to have permission from the songwriters/composers. Instead of having to call Mariah Carey every time “All I Want for Christmas is You” is played, BMI and ASCAP are music performing right organizations that manage the process and distribute royalties. While it takes no more than 10 minutes to fill out the required forms, it is an item overlooked by many companies holding events – at the holidays or any time of year - and the consequences are significant. For example, the ASCAP fine is a minimum of $750 per song plus attorney fees and court costs.
With Chief Experience Officer Cassie Brown, CSEP, at the helm, Charlotte-based TCG Events specializes in planning and executing corporate events that drive business for their clients.