Have you heard people say they’re a right-brain or left-brain thinker? Right-brained thinkers tend to be creative and instinctual, left-brainers more analytical and logical. That’s how “Beauty and the Brain,” from the minds of Christy Lamagna and James Rota, was born. James’ creativity and vision mesh with Christy’s logistics focus and strategic thinking to bring a well-rounded approach to their events. These columns are designed to highlight both sides of the planning process.
If someone asked you what event planners spend most of their time doing, what would you reply? Answering email? Writing the Program of Events (POEs)? Budget management? Conference calls? While I agree that all those things are part of our day, they weren’t what came to my mind. My answer? Making decisions.
Decision-making is integral to doing our jobs successfully, so it’s important to do a self-check to ensure that we’re making solid, professional decisions. Taking time to analyze your decision-making skills may be the best decision you make today.
The process begins when an event’s goal is confirmed and the program is assigned. We start by deciding where to host the program. What part of the country will serve the meeting best? What venue should we choose? We have to put our personal preferences aside and make sure our professional opinion and expertise guides our choice. We factor in transport time for the destination, pricing, who else is in-house over potential dates, travel time and appropriate space availability. So even though you may prefer one destination to another, it all comes down to your professional opinion, not your personal one. (Were it up to me, all my events would be held in Italy.)
Giveaways are great opportunities to test your professional decision-making. It’s tempting to select something you’d love over what the attendees would desire. Being tempted isn’t a problem. Acting on temptation gets you in trouble.
Planning offers an abundance of opportunities to exercise our decision-making skills and be respected professionals. Add to that that we get to travel the world and find new challenges to conquer each day and you have yourself a wonderful profession.
Being professional is a package deal. In an earlier article (For better or worse, first impressions create lasting results) we discussed how important those impressions are. This is a reminder that we also must pay close attention to how we handle decision-making situations.
Competence, accountability and ethics all play an important role. As a professional planner/designer, you must stay ahead of the pack and continue to educate yourself on the latest trends so that you can bring that knowledge to the table and make educated decisions. Be accountable for the decisions regardless of the outcome while displaying ethical behavior at all times.
Decision-making — when it comes to event design — is a balancing act. Ask questions until you can see the client’s vision clearly in your head. When design is infused into a meeting or event, it’s important to have an arsenal of support vendors among your contacts. Make sure that you have several vendors in each category with a variety of styles and price points to pull from. This will allow you to match the right vendor with the client’s needs and style. Remember even though you are the authority and may know more, your ultimate goal is to exceed your client’s expectations.
Want to continue the conversation? Please add your comments below this story and find us at: www.dazzlesme.com. And until next time, remember: Smart is beautiful!