Instant coffee. Instant messages. Emails that circle the globe with the click of a mouse. We've come to expect everything in an instant. When it comes to corporate event planning, many companies also expect instant results. This shows up in 2 ways:
- Short lead times for planning corporate events.
- Short time frames to achieve results.
- Ending meetings, retreats and events early before results have been achieved.
- A hectic planning process.
- A high likelihood that there will be logistical challenges.
- Frustrated participants who feel rushed and pressured and take it out on the event planners and facilitators.
- An event that misses the mark.
It's hard to understand why so much planning is left until the last minute. The disadvantages outweigh the advantages by a long shot:
- Airfares are higher. It's virtually impossible to get bargains on airline tickets when you're booking for a group at the last minute.
- It's harder to find venues. You'll have to settle for what's available and pay top dollar for it.
- The review process gets short-circuited and it's likely that some objectives and core messages will be missed.
Why insist on tight time frames? This happens a lot with retreats and educational events. If the program is 3 days, "can you deliver it in 2?" An attempt is made to shrink one day programs down to a couple of hours. These scenarios rarely turn out well. Participants need time to think, reflect, discuss and ask questions. A race against the clock makes it difficult for this to happen.
Finally, when everyone is in place and an event is flowing smoothly, why cut it short? Suddenly, it's a mad scramble to wrap things up. Delegates leave confused and there are a lot of loose ends.
If an event is worth doing, it's worth taking the time to do it well.