150 150 Next Level Event Design

I’ve recently noticed that I’m obsessed with time.  It’s not about being punctual; it’s about how much I can squeeze into each minute in a day.  I’ve taken the game of “Beat the Clock” to the extreme and adapted it to every day life.  It took me a while to realize that not everyone timed their shopping visits.  I should note that I take this pretty seriously and my personal best is Trader Joe’s – 12 minutes and a week’s groceries.  There are the necessities in your schedule and then a buffer for emergency timing.  We then of course need to allot time for spontaneity, because seriously, how fun would life be without it?

Planners are always talking about time.  What needs to be accomplished in what amount of time, and how many people are needed for each facet of the project.  Our “Run of Shows” are minute by minute — who needs to do what and when.  It’s a task to stay on target for an all-day program.  More often than not, there’s a deficit of time (typically due to an over-zealous speaker which results in a game of catch up).  At times I’ve considered bringing back the Vaudevillian Hook in order to control the timing more efficiently but I can’t imagine the audience’s reaction.  Yes, I’m kidding.

For a recent vacation, I tried something new and created a “Fun List”.  This would be the anti-thesis of the dreaded errand list, and a more positive, short-term version of the bucket list.  We had a definitive amount of time and a lot we wanted to accomplish.  Not everything on our list needed to be an extraordinary experience.  It was a balanced recipe so that each of us had our particular idea of “fun” represented.   Our list went from hiking to eating Chicken Francese and a visit in a bouncy house, (not simultaneously).  There are very few things I love more than crossing things off a list but this experience was even better because the kids bought into the plan (not to mention that the things on the list were more enjoyable than picking up the dry cleaning).  We all knew we had something to look forward to even on the way home, which included a gelato stop.

During the planning process, a client will very often refer to the need of a “Wow Factor” for their event.  This is a focus moment, when a concept, goal or intention is unveiled.  A lot of time and effort goes into planning just the right elements to create this climax. During conferences and corporate events, you don’t always have a Kabuki drop, suspended aerialist or a person jumping out of a cake.  That would be weird.  By using the same thought process as the “fun list”, we’re able to elevate the guests experience by adding inspiration to an otherwise ho-hum lackluster meeting.  For example, at a recent event instead of showing a static logo on the screens as guests entered the space, we showed a face morphing video of the attendee’s headshots.  They were amazed. A lot of effort went into that video but well worth it when guests were asking for a copy of the video post-conference.

The point of this is to take our events literally to the next level and bring something new and well, FUN!

Wishing you a fun-filled month!