• Mary Windham

The Best Event Planning Checklist

From the Desk of Mary

Event Manager - Entrepreneur - Adventurer



Every event is special.

Not only do event planners want to do well each time, but a client only goes to an event planner if they want it done absolutely right. Clients know the kind of event they want - large, small, personal, corporate, rustic, chic, high-end, low-key - and they’re trusting in the event management company’s industry expertise and skills to pull it off.

So, every event has to be perfect.

How do we do this? At the very start, Occasions, Inc. clients complete an in-depth planning form that captures every detail. Thorough communication from the beginning means that less gets missed and the planners have more time to double and triple check every aspect.

This post takes that form and boils down the key components every event needs into a useful checklist. Clients and event planners alike - use this checklist when starting the event planning process to ensure the final result is even more spectacular than you hoped!


· Point of Contact


Get the point of contact for the client and all contact details for that person. Determine if this is a decision maker or if each decision will have to go through different channels.


· Basic Meeting/Event Details


Where, when, how, what - everything that’s currently known about the event and the current timeline. Important information includes the type of event, venue, agenda, dates/times, relevant vendors, theme, pre/post activities, insurance, and - of course - the budget.


· Event Goals


Are you aiming to break even or make money? Who is your intended audience? What is the main goal for this event?


· Event Management Needs


Identify what you’re willing to do yourself versus where an expert is needed. Your event management budget and the goals for this event come into play - make sure your eyes aren’t bigger than your wallet!

  • marketing

  • graphic design and printing

  • audiovisual services

  • budget development

  • entertainment

  • design and decor

  • venue selection

  • group activities

  • transportation

  • accommodations

  • registration and attendee management

  • catering

  • photography and videography

  • telecommunications

  • onsite staffing and management

  • onsite emergency services


· Specifics


While some details may be worked out closer to the event, such as the final agenda or menu selections, try to work out as many details as possible from the very beginning. If you need audiovisual support, what specific devices or setup are you looking for? Do you need projectors? Sound system? Microphones? Staging? Lighting? Music? This part might be the toughest, but it’s very important. Break down the details to identify potential obstacles earlier and manage change later on.


As event attendees, we may not notice all the details that make up an event, but a bare room would be pretty boring! A good event planner will help you identify and plan out everything your special event needs, from bigger goals to the nitty-gritty details that make everything come together. We hope this helps you for your next event! Follow us on Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter for more industry news and updates.