Stress Management for Event and Meeting Planners
Event and Meeting Planners experience stress on a daily basis. This
article provides practical, easy tips that can immediately be put to use
by the reader. It presents the opportunity for the reader to shift
perspective and experience relief just from the words on the page. These
stress relievers not only create a balanced and more enjoyable life, they
also result in more successful business outcomes.
Event and Meeting Planners, stress management, stress management articles
Copyright 2006 Erika Trimble
Are you living your life controlled by the tyranny of the urgent?
The work of event and meeting planners may be considered either stressful
or energizing, depending on how well you handle the fast paced and
demanding environment of these industries.
In my research, I found that some of the biggest stress factors in any
event and meeting planner’s job include:
* Juggling workload
* Saying “no” when too many programs are going on at a time
* Clients leaving things to the last minute
* Suppliers responding in a timely fashion
* Balancing one client over another
* Finding staff resources at the last minute
* Managing clients expectations
* Needing more time!
In my work as a business coach and entrepreneur, I discovered the nine
most common stress relievers, which can be effectively used to create a
balanced and more enjoyable life for event and meeting planners.
1. Relieve stress with exercise. I now imagine you saying you just don’t
have the time to fit it in. Bear with me here.
Let’s look at a specific example you can relate to. The first thing most
planners do when presented with a new proposal is break it down into
different components and create timelines for each component. You can do
the same for this stress relieving strategy – create time for exercise
and build it into your weekly schedule. One way some planners do this is
enroll in a class at a defined time, while other planners calendar in
their fitness each week along with their other commitments.
You will have more energy, a brighter mind, and more creative problem
2. Take breaks to think and take stock of your situation. When you do
this you will be able to assess what is truly critical in the moment and
reorient yourself to concentrating your energy where you are most
effective. As planners you will always have multiple and minute details
to consider in creating the perfect event or meeting. Rather than just
getting through what is directly in front of you, take the time to manage
3. Take small periods of silence and solitude during the day, especially
when you feel overwhelmed with problems and responsibilities. Feeling
overwhelmed is not an uncommon feeling for planners. When you take even
five minutes of solitude at such times, you will be amazed how your ideas
flow and how the answers to your questions pop up.
4. Develop a long term perspective by taking the future into
consideration with every decision you make in the present. Then do more
things that have greater long-term value to you and your business.
Whether you are a planner working for a company or own your own business,
your daily priorities are the same: move the company forward, increase
profitability, build strong relationships, attract new customers, and
bring value and good service to existing clients.
5. Manage unexpected demands. I recognize that it is not always possible
to organize your work to minimize surprises and problems as a planner, in
spite of your best efforts. You can control your response to an
unexpected demand by determining how you will accommodate it, and when
you will accommodate it. Sometimes clients simply want to know they have
been heard and their request will be taken care of.
6. Become a student of time management. Take tips from the time
management guru’s on how to increase your consciousness about your
habits, and develop the skills to better manage yourself. Commitment to
time management is a commitment to being more successful.
7. Take charge – everything you are, or ever will be, is entirely up to
you. While there will always be days in the life of a planner when it may
be necessary to work long hours to meet a time crunch, these times ought
to be the exception rather than the rule. If you find yourself always
racing to meet deadlines, it is a clear sign that you need to look at how
you are managing your activities and your time.
8. Simplify by asking yourself several times in a day how you can
simplify a situation or make your day easier. We tend to see things in
the most complex way, and you’ll be surprised at the power in thinking of
ways to make your life easier.
9. Remember how you want to be perceived personally and professionally.
Is this as a frantic, chaotic person, or someone in charge who is a great
problem-solver? Your coworkers, industry peers, suppliers, and clients
can, and will, hold you accountable for how you spend your time.
As simple as these strategies for stress management are, they are truly
remarkable in their results.