Managing A Business Event

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Managing a business event can be one of the most exciting and challenging tasks that you will get the chance to participate in. It requires you to bring together many different skills and roles, and will give you the opportunity to multi-task, which is a challenge for even the most experienced business event organiser.


The first part of organising an event is finding the venue where the event is going to take place. The venue will set the scene for the type of event that is going to happen and will influence whether or not people want attend the event. It will also help to identify the costs that will be involved. Catering may also be an important aspect of organising an event. The type of catering may influence where you decide to hold an event. A three-course lunch is most likely to need a hotel with facilities whilst sandwich delivery may have less strict event location requirements.

Planning the different elements of an event will require you to think about the timings of the event, what you need to order and when. It is important that facilities, such as a sound system or projector, be reserved or hired as soon as it is known they will be needed. You will learn in more detail about these aspects of the role in the section on planning an event.

Setting up the programme The programme is the list of what is happening at the event and the order in which it is happening. It guides the organisation of the event and will be used by attendees. The programme’s quality and content will help to guide people’s interest as well as give them an outline of what is going to happen during the day. The programme will also give details of any special guests, speeches, entertainment, prize-giving or free gifts that might be part of the event. Sometimes a guest speaker may encourage more people to attend and this will need to be highlighted in the programme.

There are a variety of different types of programme that may be used for an event. These may include programmes that have various activities that attendees can select from or programmes where everyone is following the same structure for the event. The length of time for the event will also influence the programme. All-day events need more time for people to travel to the event and for coffee and lunch breaks. Events that take place over a few days may require arrangements for accommodation including breakfast.

Preparing and distributing supporting documents Most events require some form of hard copy or soft copy that can be distributed. For environmental and cost reasons, soft copies are often preferred. Sometimes documents may be supplied on a USB stick or in a free wallet or bag that is given out by the event organiser. Often promotional items include advertising material for the organiser to give them maximum publicity and raise awareness of the organisation.

The main documents that might be needed for an event are listed in Table 18.2. A number of different documents may be needed to support an event. These may be more traditional paper documents or other methods that organisations are increasingly using such as websites with a secure username and password, email or social networking websites to distribute information about events.

There are also a number of other documents that may be produced that are not given out to attendees. These are used by the organisation to monitor and track the progress of the event, for example, a risk assessment or a budget plan. Organisational procedures Organisations will usually have a set of procedures that they follow for events, and these procedures will change depending on the size of the organisation, the type of event that is taking place and who is involved. Current legal requirements There are a number of important legal requirements that need to be considered when organising an event. These include contractual, health and safety and age requirements.

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