Language Barrier or Path?

Brittany Malone

Word of Mouth Events & Planning

Student Event Coordinator

866-905-9002

Communication, of course, is a huge part of event planning. You have to be able to communicate with co-workers, vendors, sponsors, donors, clients, venues, etc. One thing that has to be accounted for…English is not everyone’s first language.

Spanish is a good language to know, in any amount. Losing out on clients or sponsorships due to a language barrier is not good for business. In fact, you could enhance the number of endorsements you receive by simply pitching ideas or even attempting to communicate in Spanish.

Only good at writing the language? Consider translating some of your marketing tools into Spanish. Good at reading the language? Get local business magazines and newspapers written in Spanish.

Perhaps you’re like me. I can read, write and carry a conversation in Spanish. I’m just not confident with it. But the more I shy away from it, the more of a barrier the language will hold.

With any language, you have to use it to get better at it. So, if you here someone speaking another language you may be familiar with, try to start a conversation. Sure, you may sound silly, but it will pay off in the end.

Si usted practica mucho, en el futuro usted va a hablar mejor.

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Bartering…Simple concept, complex application

Brittany Malone

Word of Mouth Events & Planning Intern

866-905-9002 ext. 114

Business to business communication can be challenging and more intimidating than communicating with a client who has sought you out. All events have overhead costs; however, it is crucial to get as much “bang for you buck” for as many aspects of an event as possible.

As an event planner, you may be used to being the service provider. Sometimes, you’ll need services from others. When it comes time to pay for a service your event requires, you should have a clear price cap as well as a clear understanding of the economic climate.

Working out a deal is a technique that may take time to develop depending on your confidence level. I’ve found it beneficial to get into “consumer mode,” during negotiation time. Why? Because that’s what you are. You can’t be demanding, and you can’t be compliant. All of this goes back to the fundamental researching that is important in event planning.

You also have to be able to compromise. If a business is willing to lower the price of their services, you should be able to offer them exposure at an event you’re hosting. That defines the business relationship, which strengthens the contact and cuts out time in the next event’s planning process.

So, next time a service provider gives you an outrageously high price quote, be calm and stand by your research. Confidently suggest a compromise that suits both parties, and I’m sure any business will be more than happy to work something out with you.

 Happy planning!

Keep the Wheels Spinning

Brittany Malone

Word of Mouth Events & Planning Intern

866-905-9002 ext. 114

In this industry, you have to be versatile and full of ideas. It is common practice for an event planner to work on two unrelated events simultaneously.

How can you plan more than one event successfully? It’s all about having a clear definition, purpose and direction for each event. Specificity is key. Who has to be involved? Do you need instructors, choreographers or coaches? Who would want to attend? What age range are you targeting? What types of donors, sponsors or vendors are needed for the specific event?

Once you can get the specifics on the event determined with your team, the rest should be simple researching to find ways to get to the answers you’ve already determined.

Your mind has to be working constantly, and I don’t mean on autopilot. You have to be actively involved in the planning process whether you are planning one event or 10 events.

Event planning is not your typical 9-5. If you’re a planner, you’re working all day. Lately, I’ve been working later and later into the evenings. Not knowingly, but I find myself coming up with ideas all the time.

That’s what’s so exciting about this industry. Once you get the hang of it, it doesn’t feel like you’re working. So, keep the ideas rolling and you may find yourself working on 100 events at one time. Well, that may be pushing it, but anything is possible.

Happy planning!

The Value of Contacts

Brittany Malone

Word of Mouth Events & Panning Intern

866-905-9002

 

 

A very important element of event planning is creating contacts and building business relationships. The first thing to remember is anyone or any company you come in contact with in this profession should be considered a business contact.

I was in a restaurant earlier this week. I was looking around waiting to have lunch and heard the bartender talking about an event the restaurant held a few weeks ago. Instantly, my wheels were spinning. Possible venue.

I was driving around the city, and in front of me was a limousine with the company name and contact information. I snapped a quick picture of that information. I went to see a venue this week. The event director gave me a packet full of vendors that have participated in the venue’s past events. Those became my contacts as well.

The point – you should never rule out any contacts. Even if you don’t think they fit into the niche for the event you’re working on at the moment, they may be perfect for the next event or for an event your colleague is working on.

Intern 101

It’s the third week of my internship and I guess I’m a little frustrated. I feel like I should be accomplishing more than what I’m doing, but I also feel like I won’t feel satisfied until I begin to close in on the date.
I finally got some teammates this week. I’m excited because I feel like we will get more accomplished and I will see the results. Visit back next week and I will be able to let you know if having a team makes it more productive.

Being a part of a team

By Brittany Malone

Word of Mouth Events & Planning

Intern

866-905-9002 ext. 114

I am sure some events lend themselves to a duo or even a solo act. But sometimes, it is greatly appreciated to have a group of people working together to meet the same goal.

I am the project lead with three team members and assistance from my boss. Working in a group of four may seem simple, but I assure you it is not an easy task. The tip for this week is how to keep yourself and your team organized and on the same page.

Communication – This is a big deal. Whether it is sending 100 emails per day, making seemingly endless phone calls, creating chat rooms, or exhausting your text messages, communication is an essential element of a strong team.

Take Good Notes – Anytime an idea, question, or suggestion comes to mind, write it down. You can never have too much information or too many notes. Then, at the end of the night, type everything out so you can keep it dated and recorded as neatly as possible.

Err on the “too much” than “too little” – When communicating, include as much information as possible. If you felt it was important enough to write down, then include it when you relay information.

Embrace suggestions – Always listen to what your team members have to say. Everyone has a different way of looking at things, and by finding an efficient way to combine all the angles, the end result can be amazing.

Never forget your boss is there to help you – Your boss is experienced in the industry and has overcome a lot of obstacles. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or use their resources. And always pay attention when your boss is speaking. Note how they communicate with other professionals. View your boss as the perfect template for success.

Remember, each day opens the door for a new learning experience. So soak it all in.

Happy planning!