SCORE Big in Planning Your Events and Avoid Your Own Worst Picture Moment

Last week, DC-area master event planner Rachael Shackelford broke down the logistical nightmare from the 2017 Oscar Awards Best Picture flub. This week, Rachael will share her fool-proof strategy YOU can use for planning logistic-heavy events.

Celebration, event, champaigne glasses

Rachael here!

My strategy is simple –  it requires remembering the acronym SCOREDD when planning your event and its logistics.

1.       Slow down – During both tiny and huge events there is a need to rush to make sure every aspect is taken care of in the appropriate manner. Rushing leads to overlooked details. Take a moment to slow down to be completely sure that all aspects of your event have been handled. You have spent months and invested money into making this a success. Sloooow down to make sure it is.

2.       Communicate – Does someone on your logistics team see a red flag? Make sure they feel comfortable in communicating that. Every single bit of your event should be communicated from the event planner to your team. This communication should begin as soon as you have the idea to produce an event and should not end until the last guest has left. (Even after that final guest has left it is a great idea to have a postmortem to discuss what has gone right and what can be improved for next time.) There is nothing too small to communicate. Over communication is nearly impossible when trying to ensure event success.

3.       Organization – No one on your event team should be on your event team unless you know they are organized. Period.

4.       Rundown – Have a living and ongoing rundown for your event as logistics are solidified. This rundown should tell all staff involved where they should be at all times. It outlines responsibilities and timing. Every successful event needs a rundown.

5.       Everyone – All people on your event team need to have a voice and feel like their voice is appreciated and heard. It is not just the executives who have the best ideas, especially since it is not always the executives who are executing the actual work of the event. The people who are putting together the event know the details of the logistics and can point out red flags better than anyone. It is critical that everyone knows without even the slightest doubt that they can communicate all feedback and that their voice matters.

6.       Detail oriented – Your event planning team must be detail oriented. They have to care that a fork is crooked or that there is lint on the back of a chair. Even the slightest detail gives a certain feel for your event. This also ties into organization. Being organized and detail oriented creates a solid team for planning and for executing the perfect event.

7.       Double and triple check everything! – Who on your team is checking to make sure that the right envelope is being handed to Warren Beatty? Who is slowing down to double check? Who is triple checking? Having safeguards for all the crucial elements of your event can save you from a lot of embarrassment. You do not want innocent bystanders to be the face of your team’s mistake. It will be a gigantic PR blunder for your company and your event.

Follow SCOREDD and significantly decrease the likelihood of a gaffe at your event.

Your investment of time and money should pay off. You don’t want to stand in the way of your own success. Your event is a reflection of you. It is a reflection of your company’s message. Let it reflect the brilliance that are you and your company.

Once the event is a hit, you will have SCOREDD an enormous victory with all of your event’s stakeholders. The scoreboard will read:

Team You: 1, Team Blunders: 0

You’re undefeated and we love it!

Click to learn more about Rachael Shackelford, Principal, The Event Cottage