Are you organising an event and feeling overwhelmed with the administrative tasks that you need to complete it? Are you having nightmares that the venue double books you? That your exhibitors or speakers cancel last moment? That people turn up who haven’t registered or worse of all no-one turns up at all? If so don’t fear VirtuAli is here!
In my work as a Virtual PA and in my own community, I’ve been involved behind the scenes in organising a wide variety of events. You name it I’ve done it! Everything from Strictly dancing fundraisers, to the launch of new networks, anniversary events, bake-offs between community leaders, helping at farmers markets and chairing monthly meetings. Whether it be inaugurating a new building or making sure people know the difference between the Argentina tango or the Viennese waltz, there are a number of factors common to the management of all events.
You may think you can, but the simple truth is you CAN’T DO everything! You can’t be on top of the marketing, the administration and have the headspace to really plan what it is you want to do. Do the things that you are good at and OUTSOURCE the rest.
Make sure you have some kind of system in place that no matter how many people are involved with the planning of an event that you ALL have ACCESS to the same information so that means not saving important updates to your Desktop! You can share documents in Google drive or have a shared Dropbox or use or a collaborative tool such as Trello, Asana or Slack. Regular updates to whomever you are collaborating with are also important so you are all on the same page. Have regular meetings with all players either face-to-face or via one of many online video conferencing platforms there are these days such as Zoom, Skype for Business or GoToMeeting.
Think of all eventualities! Have a backup plan in case your speakers don’t turn up on the night, in case there is an emergency fire drill, in case the next storm Eleanor /Georgina etc. arrives in full force. By hiring a Virtual Assistant (VA) you can outsource the time consuming nitty gritty admin work to someone else leaving you the time to concentrate tasks that you are good at.
Here are 5 Reasons to budget for a Virtual Assistant for the organisation of your next
- You can task time a VA with the marketing and advertising of the event, helping you to -write a description of the event-create poster and logo-source advertising streams to market your event-create events and schedule posts on social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter etc.
- You can leave the time-consuming task of coordinating people, organising meetings and gathering all necessary information to someone else
- You can ask a VA to research availability and rates of venue and liaise with providers over contract details/catering/special requests/final numbers
- You can rely on a VA to streamline the way you are selling tickets for your
event –by suggesting ticketing platforms such as Get Invited to simplify how
you sell tickets, manage and promote your event online and interact with your
- Communication after the event is as important as before and during and a VA can also help you send out a satisfaction survey or collate the results of surveys taken during the event.
Skills a Virtual Assistant brings
By hiring a Virtual Assistant, you are assured that you will have someone on board, who:
– very quickly gets up to speed with what is happening
– has the experience to know what questions to ask in advance and to predict problems
– is neutral and who you can bounce ideas off but as a professional still cares about the outcome and success of your event
-importantly for you, who you can hire for a pre-set number of hours or days a month to help with the planning
The beauty of being a Virtual Assistant is that all this can be done remotely with a laptop anywhere in world but flexibility and added customer value is also very important. Being ‘virtual’ doesn’t mean that you also can’t be physically present and come out into the ‘real’ world every now and then! I’ve taken minutes at coordination meetings in the past and then circulated them to make sure everyone one is up to speed and is aware of what tasks they are responsible for. I’ve often helped at the event helping to man the registration desk, helping with room set up and simply reassuring the event organiser that there is an extra set of hands on the night.
So, for your next event when working out the scope and the resources make sure you budget in the cost of hiring a VA to save your precious priceless mental energy along the way. You won’t regret it!