3 Tips to Conquering Day-of Disasters in Event Planning
Anyone that has ever been involved with event planning has learned that nothing ever goes exactly as
planned. Grooms arrive to their weddings without their tuxes.
Rainy weather makes everyone fun for cover during an outdoor concert. D.J.’s don’t show up to
important corporate parties.
Day of Disaster It Happens
Whatever the circumstance, every gig has its little “day-of” disasters that makes the event planner want
rip their hair out. They resist the urge in fear that they’ll put the attendees ill at ease, but that doesn’t
make their jobs any easier.
Their responsibility becomes to fix all the little disasters that start
creeping up, on top of keeping to a stringent schedule. When done
wrong, the gig lacks a certain luster that builds the reputation of your
Like a play, your work is essentially putting on a performance. Any
problems bring the illusion down around the attendees.
When done right, the attendees don’t realize there are any problems and they continue enjoying the
entertainment of the show. Your goal is to prepare for those day-of disasters to best preserve the
integrity of your event.
Back Up Plan
Here are 3 tips to help you conquer those day-of disasters. First, create a backup plan for absolutely
If the caterers can’t come last minute, you should know exactly who you can call to get a similarly sized
order of food ready when it’s needed. If the groom doesn’t show up with the right tux, have a spare
rental that he can change into, know the nearby tux rental shops, or plan a way to delay.
Have small tents and umbrellas on hand to cover everything and
everyone in case of rain. Every aspect of the gig should have an
alternate “plan b” that can be enacted in an instant.
Detailing a backup plan will help you work efficiently and quickly
when something goes wrong. Plan “a” and “b” are both destined to
slow things down though if you don’t have a detailed timeline
made for the day.
The second tip is to know what is supposed to happen at every minute of the day. This means that
they’ve set very clear expectations about who is supposed to be where with what, when.
This also means that they need to be on top of people that are not in the right place with the right things
at the right time. If the caterer was supposed to be at the backdoor at 4 p.m. and it’s now 4:01, you
should be on the phone finding out why.
That being said, you don’t have to be rude about finding out where people are, just be on top of it.
Doing so will accomplish 2 things.
One, it will show the people you’re working with that you’re serious about your deadlines. Two, if
someone can’t make it then you can enact plan b immediately.
The last tip is to delegate responsibilities to your team. Don’t work a gig alone.
Get people to help out. Give them responsibilities and trust them to take care of it.
They will be invaluable resources when things go wrong. When you have a plan b and a timeline of
expectations, you can get people to moving to fix disasters in an
instant, preserving the continuity of the event.
Something will go wrong at your event. Expect that much.
Create a backup plan for everything, make a detailed timeline of
the event, and delegate responsibilities to fix those disasters. Event
planning becomes more manageable when you prepare for the
Stevens Henager College is aiding event planning in Provo through their coursework. Interested
professionals can always head back to focus their education on event planning in Provo locations.