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How to Handle Problems At Your Event

Planning an event that runs smoothly can feel like a difficult task. With so many different elements required to come together in one place or time, it feels inevitable that something might go wrong.

There are ways to plan to ensure that problems at your next event are dealt with swiftly. And, with a bit of planning and forethought, you can anticipate any problems that might arise and ensure they don’t factor into the day at all.

In this article, we’ll explore exactly what you can do in the planning process to do just that. As well as this, we’ll take a look at the ways in which you can tackle unexpected problems, that are sometimes entirely out of your control, in a way that doesn’t impact the overall outcomes you planned for. Ready? Let’s dive in.


Handling Problems Proactively
A proactive approach involves anticipating what could go wrong and putting plans in place to ensure it doesn’t. Or at least, if it does, there’s a back up plan.

For example, if you are planning an outdoor event months in advance there is no way you can predict what the weather will be like. Of course, you can plan it in the summer months to make it more likely you’ll enjoy good weather. But we all know how unpredictable the great British weather can be! So, short of hosting your event in a far-flung country where good weather is (almost) guaranteed, you need to plan for the worst-case scenario. In this case, it could be liaising with the venue to make plans to move the event inside should it be raining. Or, you could arrange for sheltered areas with outdoor heaters to ensure guests remain comfortable throughout.

This type of planning is proactive. It anticipates the problem and solves it ahead of time. The advantage of doing this is, should the worst happen, you know exactly what needs to be done in advance and have the means to do it swiftly.

Here are some examples of problems you can plan for when organising your event:

A speaker, entertainer, or special guest failing to turn up
Guests not turning up
Technology failing
Bad weather
Obviously, this list isn’t exhaustive. However, it will give you an idea of the type of event problems that you can control.

For example, when it comes to speakers and entertainers you can get the jump on any potential problems by asking them to confirm their attendance 24-hours before the event. Even then, you can also have a back-up in mind to draw upon should your first choice be unable to attend for any reason.

Similarly, when it comes to technology, you should factor in things such as sound checks or rehearsals before the main event. We’d also advise making sure that any presentations are stored on a USB drive should someone’s laptop give up the ghost minutes before, and all technology is tested prior to the event to avoid any technical hiccups where possible.


Handling Problems Re-actively
It is entirely possible that something may happen over the course of your event that is totally beyond your control. It may be so bizarre and unexpected that you don’t have a contingency plan for it.
But, even if this does happen, if you have a plan in place for how these problems will be communicated and dealt with, you can minimise the disruption they do have.

Of course, you absolutely should have a plan for emergencies. Everyone at your event should know where the emergency exits are, where they are to congregate following evacuation of the event, and who they can talk to should they discover something untoward.


Develop Strong Communication Lines
For less catastrophic but potentially disruptive elements, ensure that the lines of communication are firmly open. Everyone working at your event should know who their go-to person is if a problem arises. This may not necessarily be you, but there should be someone who is contactable at all times should something happen. Make it clear how this person can be contacted. If it’s by phone, then ensure everyone has the correct contact number and all their phones are fully charged.

Some venues may have poor reception while your inside that makes using a phone difficult without leaving the building. If this is the case, consider walkie talkies or liaise with the venue as to whether there’s any internal communications system you can use.

Any problem that arises throughout the course of an event should be reported to the relevant person quickly to allow for it to be dealt with. Your team should also be clear about this in your briefing and make any outside individuals (such as suppliers, entertainers, or vendors) aware of the steps they should take should something not go to plan.

Keep Calm & Carry On
Often, it’s not the problem itself that causes an issue over the course of an event but the way it is handled. When a problem is addressed calmly, with no one losing their heads, then more often than not it barely registers with guests and attendees.

While you can’t plan for every eventuality, with contingency plans in place, you can be ready for almost anything. And even if something unexpected does go wrong, you can be poised and ready to smooth it over without missing a beat.

The key is to stay calm and in control. Ensure channels of communication are open and everyone is briefed about what they should do in case of a problem. When you take these steps, alongside a proactive approach which minimises the impact of common problems through planning, you can be confident of an event that will be enjoyable for guests and infinitely less stressful for you.


Get Help From The Experts
If you’re new to event planning or have been tasked with creating an event much bigger than anything you have taken on before, then contact us. At KDM Events, we are experts in the field of event planning. For over 2 decades we have worked in the field and we have firsthand experience in smoothly dealing with problems. What’s more, we ensure through the planning process that absolutely everything is accounted for, with contingency plans to back it up too.

That leaves you free to enjoy the event and carry out your role within it without worrying about what may go wrong. For advice and information about our corporate event management services, please give us a call today.