How to Overcome Common Event Planning Mistakes

When it comes to planning events – from weddings to graduation parties to corporate occasions – there are so many details to consider. This is why it’s easy and common to make a few mistakes along the way. Even the most experienced professionals still do from time to time. This can make the task of event planning seem daunting or really undesirable, but don’t worry. There’s good news!

You don’t have to be a professional event planner to still plan a fantastic occasion that people will enjoy. All you need is some common sense and key organization skills to ensure your bases are covered. Let’s take a look at six common event planning mistakes people often make – and how to avoid or overcome them!

  1. Forgetting to set a budget

One of the most common (and biggest) mistakes you can make when planning an event is not setting a budget from Day 1 and losing control of total costs. A few dollars here and a couple down payments there can really add up – and quick! Seasoned event planners will tell you that among the very first thing you must do is set a realistic budget and allocate pieces of that total budget across your most essential expenses.

From there, you can start making decisions like setting a date, choosing a venue and narrowing down the size of your guest list. But start with a budget and stick to it! Here are some great tips on where to splurge and where to save.

  1. Not working with professionals

Professionals want to help you. Not just because it’s their job, but because it’s their passion. They have likely made many of these common mistakes time and time again and have found better ways to plan a great event while avoiding them. Let them lend their advice!

This doesn’t mean simply going out and hiring an event planner either, working with a team of professionals means who you choose to provide any of your events’ services like catering or rental items. We always offer free event consultation as part of our services because we want to see your event succeed and our experience can help. If you choose to work with bargain vendors, you might risk working with less than professional businesses that won’t have this same level of expertise.

  1. Ignoring Murphy’s Law

You know Murphy’s Law – “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.” This has proven to be true far too many times at countless events throughout history. From inclement weather to natural disasters to illnesses, Plan B (C or D) becomes so very important to have. Don’t make the common mistake of not having a backup plan in place. It’s not fun to think about things not going as planned, but you’ll be glad you did in advance rather than being blindsided the day-of. Here is some more advice on expecting the unexpected at your event.

  1. Not allowing enough time for set-up

Your guests may not see all the time and effort it takes to plan and set-up for the event, but this is where the majority of the work hours are spent. Another common event planning mistake is to not allow enough time for the set-up process. This is where Murphy’s Law also commonly plays a role, so adding in a few additional buffer hours is highly recommended. To get a feel for just what our own set-up (and tear-down) process entails, take a look here.

  1. Leaving your guests in the dark about important details

You want your guests to have the luxury of simply showing up at the event and not having to worry about anything else. That’s great! But don’t forget to cue them in on the essential details like directions, where to park, what to wear or if they are expected to bring anything special to add to the event. These nitty gritty details may not fit on your beautifully designed event invitation, but be sure to place them on a separate card and include them in your invite. While it may seem like a lot of information upfront, your guests will be grateful for the communication when they plan for your event.

  1. Forgetting to confirm your vendors

Once you’ve made the big decision on who you want as your event vendors and you’ve selected from their many choices, it’s easy to cross this off your list and forget about touching base with them prior to your event. Avoid this common (and sometimes detrimental) event planning mistake by following-up with each vendor at least 48 hours in advance of your event to confirm things like the details of your order, your headcount (especially if this has changed from what you predicted) and when they will need to be onsite to do the set-up or deliver your items. This simply task alone could save you frustration or embarrassment!

Have you ever made and overcome any of these common event planning mistakes? Or do you have additional advice to share? Join in the conversation by commenting below!

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