Tricks For a New Meeting Planner To Beat Performance Anxiety

meeting planner

If you are a new meeting planner, you have probably suffered from some form of performance anxiety at some point. You are not alone. Majority of event planners and people working with event planning companies suffer from performance anxiety.

Meetings are an important part of corporate event planning and when you turn around, you see many event planners doing it without stress or anxiety. And they are very successful.

How are they doing it? Do they know any tricks you don’t know?

Yes. The successful event planners know the tricks and in this post and we are going to uncover a few secrets.

Keep a checklist: You already know the importance of checklists in any business environment. But, as a meeting planner, checklists gain more importance for you. But wait, how are you going to make a checklist for the meeting? How would you identify important resources needed in the meeting? Well, every meeting is unique in nature, so resources and activities key to success of every meeting are unique too.

The one who can best help you in identifying the key resources is your client. Set up a client meeting to explain how the meeting would move, what activities would be involved, what would come first, what second and from there you would get to know what resources would be required.  You can even refer to the contract you have signed with your client to get more information.

Now put all the findings on a MS Word file or use event management software and make a checklist of all resources key to the meeting’s success.

Make a work plan: Now that you’ve got to know the event’s major activities, it’s time to get down to your laptop, open a word file and make a work plan.  Don’t know what a work plan is?

Well, a work plan basically consists of brief, half-line statements of the activities and milestone involved in the event, the dates those millstones need to be completed by and the resources needed to achieve each milestone.

Because as a meeting planner, you would start planning months ahead of the actual date, a work plan would help you keep track of important activities. In other words it is the day-to-day action plan of what you will do on what date. Start by determining the order in which those activities would be carried out; what comes first and what second etc. The best thing you can do is create a four column table with the following heads and then fill the table with information you have:

  1. Activity
  2. Start date
  3. End date
  4. Resource needed

Prepare a budget: You have made a checklist, identified activities and milestones and resources required. Now it’s now time to prepare the budget. It should be easy for you by now because most of it comes from the activities and resources you’ve already identified. You can start by creating another table and copy the activities and resources from the previous step into the new table. If you’ve done this, now estimate each activity’s cost, taking into account the resources needed and assigning dollars to them.

You should keep a 10 percent buffer in your budget to compensate for items in case you have forgotten them in the work plan and budget.

Organize your work: The key to beat performance anxiety, as a meeting planner, is to stay organized. Use your laptop to keep tab on milestones, track electronic files, and if possible employ event management software to avoid any possible rush activity. And yes, I forgot to say keep backups of files on a flash drive for easy access. Successful event planning companies keep track of their documents like venue and catering contracts, schedules, and audiovisual information in electronic form as well as on paper for backup.

Takeaway: Keeping a checklist, making a work plan, preparing a budget and staying organized are the keys that would not only help you overcome performance anxiety as a meeting planner, but would also keep you organized and focused, so you can grow your events business.