Posts Tagged ‘partnerships’



April 14, 2010

Today’s issue of Special Event Eventline definitely hit a hot spot for me. So forgive me, as I vent.

No, I am not here to agree with Andrea Michaels about how rough things are. I am writing to say KUDOS to Nancy Shaffer of Bravo Events by Design for understanding that the best thing about the “Great Recession” is that it is proving to be a wake-up call in all industries and for us, I would say, Thank Goodness – there is FINALLY some that are seeing the light!

Yes indeed, the appearance of not being “lavish” is and should be a high priority. However, I would strongly disagree that it is a higher priority than staging an effective event…unless our definition of “effective event” comes only from our own perspective. Did we get to use the latest supporting tools of the trade- trends in color, floral, entertainment and furniture? Did we get some great photos that will help up win awards and promote our celebrity? Did we get to take some time away from the office to travel to the proposed site, be wined and dined and treated as a VIP as we made a value judgment on whether the destination or venue would work for what we had planned? Did we work hard? Did we make lots of money?

For those among us that think that way, that world was allowed to flourish for a short length of time only because we were a new and exciting twist in an industry that catered to clients inexperienced in the world of events. That bubble has burst and rightfully so. Again, this latest scare should be considered a reset in our thinking-a wake-up call to evaluate what we do, how we do it and what benefit and value we provide. In the corporate event world, our mission is not that illusive WOW-factor; it is to facilitate delivering a message. That WOW-factor is only a tool to help make the message memorable and deliver a call to action.

An effective event is a two-way street; if it did not deliver to our client the results it was designed to do, it was not effective. We offer a service, friends, not an opportunity for our clients to spend money. At the same time, because we have the expertise to design the on-target experience that delivers a client’s desired outcomes, we can demand respect and adequate compensation for our efforts. But we have to earn it. In the future, we may need to work smart instead of hard.

If we think we are being mistreated, now might be a good time to look at ourselves. Why is that happening? I expect more of us will do as Bravo Events by Design concluded….the change in the business climate means we have to change the way we do business – as well as our attitude.

Nancy Shaffer is absolutely correct. Effective events are achieved not thorough an adversarial relationship, but by partnering with the client. “We are not just party planners. We are the producers of the live elements of a company’s marketing and communications campaign.”

Once again, I end with an oft-paraphrased thought from Joan Eisenstodt: What we have accomplished in the past and know today means little. It bears no relationship to skills we will need to be effective in the future – whether or NOT the budgets available increase. That NEW DAY is fast becoming the NEW WORLD. Get used to it.