A “superhero” may not wear a cape in the Event industry, but the best Event partner can save the day.
In the early days of building Event Specialists, I envisioned a world where corporate events could not only be entirely stress-free; I saw the potential of events to be profitable, brand-building experiences which could engage, empower and captivate attendees – and turn them into a true community.
A lot has changed since we launched in 2004. Yet one key element remains engrained in our purpose as a company: we “save” events not just from technical and logistical disasters, but from averageness.
Here are 3 ways the best Event Planning & Production companies (including our own!) can save the day when your event needs it most.
- Design with a digital-first approach
In a post-pandemic era that has changed the face of events permanently, we saw brands and event professionals “rush” to “go digital.” At Event Specialists, we have long taken a different route: we don’t see digital event strategy as an “add-on” or contingency plan. Instead, we lead with a digital-first approach.
As a firm, we have been (loudly) advocating for a paradigm shift in the Event industry long before the pandemic. We understood how powerful Hybrid and Virtual events could be for organizations globally – so we instilled a digital-first mindset in every event we design. I became the first Certified Digital Event Strategist in Canada. I have even been called an “OG of Hybrid Events” (a title I will happily accept!)
From platform management, technology troubleshooting, digital-driven monetization and engagement strategies, we know them well because digital has been a core part of our approach since 2008. It allows us a unique ability: we can jump into an event at the 9th hour, understand an event’s digital ecosystem, identify gaps, navigate technical issues, and find new ways of elevating the attendee journey.
- Balance a Risk Management mindset
Being a “superhero” means being bold when we need to be, and conservative when we need to be. Leveraging a risk management mindset is a unique element Event Specialists has always brought to its events. The reason is simple: over the years I had attended too many events that went wrong (we all remember those awkward moments we’ve lived through that destabilize an event experience).
When our firm began to scale, we would prioritize risk management in ways others were not. Today, every event we design has an in-built risk management plan: we “reverse engineer” an event, spot gaps where things might go wrong, and identify ways to strengthen those gaps. From last-minute tech platform meltdowns to having a testing cadence and backup solution to internet connections, preparing for contingencies (while perhaps not the “sexiest” part of Event strategy) is key for success.
I’ve also learned this: when your event partner prepares for any and every possible outcome, everyone feels more secure – and events suddenly begin to achieve the impossible: they become stress-free. Mitigating risks means ensuring an amazing experience for attendees – but it equally means a smoother experience for brands. All of the fun and none of the stress.
- Build and lean on community
Like any industry superhero, we have built a community of the most remarkable individuals in and around the Event space. As a result, brands and trade associations that work with Event Specialists don’t just hire an amazing team that know their stuff; they hire an organization that has a whole tribe behind them.
When a firm lives and breathes the power of tribe for their own purposes, it goes without saying that they will understand your tribe – and care deeply for their experience.
“Superhero” also means leveraging my voice, establishing my thought leadership and not shying away from discussing challenges in our industry that we may normally hesitate to discuss.
I have learned that when we lead our teams, communities and ourselves with clear core values, we can be a true force for change. Before we know it, we can elevate our industry – for the benefit of event professionals, suppliers, and clients everywhere. What can be more superhero-like than that?
Mahoganey Jones is an Entrepreneur, Keynote Speaker & CEO of Event Specialists, a fast-growing full-service event strategy, planning & production company. A leader of the Event industry, Mahoganey has won awards including Event Professional of the Year (2021), Top 100 Most Influential People in the Event Industry, 40 Under 40 and others. Her mission is to create stress-free, tech-driven events that bring impact – while elevating the industry as a whole in the process.