Your New Year’s Sourcing Resolution

To most people, January means one thing: New Year’s Resolutions. The start of a new year gives people a renewed hope that this year will be their best year yet!

As a planner, you are required to juggle a multitude of projects simultaneously. From concept to execution, there is an immense amount of work that goes into planning a successful event. Organization and time management are key. Planners in particular may benefit from creating resolutions that are targeted to keep them on track and help them stay organized.

While resolutions are made with the best of intentions, they are often neglected just a few weeks into the new year. Part of the reason people fail at sticking to their resolutions is because they set too many or their goals are too lofty.

So let’s start small. I suggest you begin by creating one or two sourcing resolutions. Sourcing the perfect hotel or venue is the first step to planning an event. As far as first steps go, this one is pretty important. The property you choose sets the tone for the entire event so you want to make sure it’s the perfect fit for your program.

Inspired to set your own 2018 Sourcing Resolutions? Great! If you are having trouble deciding where to begin, take a peak below.

Concessions
Include your requested concessions in your RFP. If you want to take it one step further, order them by importance. Breaking them into must-haves and nice-to-haves is a great way to let the hotel know which concessions are requirements and which you are willing to negotiate on. Giving this information to the hotel upfront will allow the sales rep to provide you with a competitive proposal. It will also help eliminate some of the back and forth between you and the hotel. Less time negotiating with the hotels means more time for you to tackle your other projects.

Decision Timeline
Set your decision timeline before you even begin. If you are not the final decision maker, see if the person making the final call can give you an idea of when they will determine a short list, schedule site visits and request a contract. This will most likely change as things progress, but it will give you an understanding of when things need to move forward. It will also give the hotels a better idea of when they should expect answers from you and when they should give you time to breathe.

Get Creative
Let your creativity shine through. It’s true that planners need to be organized, type-A personalities but they are also inherently creative creatures. In fact, most planners thrive when adding a creative element to their events. Embrace this and put the right side of your brain to use! You can do this by working with the chef to create a unique menu that fits within your budget. Or you can try playing with uplighting to create the perfect ambiance. You can even do something as simple as compile a new playlist for transitioning attendees from one session to another. Whatever it is, getting creative can remind you why you got into event planning in the first place.

Shelley Griffin

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