Professional event planning protects business reputation

How much time do you spend talking about the risks and issues register? No matter how meticulously planned your event, something beyond your control will always happen. How you handle any challenges will linger in the minds of your customers long after they have returned to the office. If handled badly, such issues can cause major reputational damage or worse – criminal proceedings. Here are three of our top reputational issues and our mitigation strategies.

From fog to family emergencies, we know cancellations and delays happen. The solution is to plan for them. We always recommend that speakers arrive the day before an event to attend a pre-event briefing. It enables everyone to get to know each other and you to run an audio-visual check and to make sure that the stage is set up correctly. We also plan our slots so that one speaker can be quickly substituted for another in the case of a last-minute cancellation.

We also plan a backup interactive session where the delegates run the show with a facilitator. We find this often receives the most positive feedback, as the group discusses the issues closest to their hearts. This is how we achieved a 100% ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ rating at our most recent event, despite two of the speakers missing their slots on the first day.

From food poisoning to civil unrest, there are a whole plethora of things that could go wrong. What if you had booked your annual conference in Hong Kong a year ago? Would your delegates want to travel there? Would the event still go ahead?

We run several likely scenarios for many different health and safety issues that could occur at each of our events and develop a mitigation plan with the client. In the case of food safety, we only use authorised hotels with a high hygiene rating. And we always keep a close eye on the government agency’s travel advice, among many of the other measures we take to ensure everything runs smoothly.

One of the biggest issues in getting a group of industry professionals together is the risk that your event could unintentionally enable cartels to meet or form.

We make sure that every delegate understands how to comply with anti-bribery and corruption, and anti-competitive law in our pre-event communications. This is to safeguard our client and the delegates. During the event, reminders are given at the start of each day, formal notes are taken and the meeting can be stopped at any point. We also ensure that staff host small groups of delegates to ensure that there are no inappropriate conversations. It is also a nice thing to do.

For a strategic review of your event plans, please contact Katie Baverstock-Hunt.