Most evening corporate events
last 4 to 5 hours. Afternoon corporate picnics can be longer, 4 to 6 hours.
Reserving your Event Location
If your event is in a hotel or
banquet facility, reserve it as soon as possible. This is particularly important if it takes place on a weekend night or near
a holiday. If you have flexibility in choosing the day of the event, and if budgets are tight, weekday evenings often provide
the best opportunities for discounts on these facilities.
Schedule the evening's entertainment:
1) So that it won't interfere with business, and 2) When the highest number of guests will be present.
Music is appropriate for almost
all events, and is normally a first consideration for entertainment. Music can help to reinforce the theme of your event or
establish a mood. Professional DJs and live musicians are experts at accomplishing this feat. They can also help
with announcements, or introduce company speakers.
Choose a musical genre appropriate
to the event and the guests. If your event is a luau, then of course Polynesian music is what you need. Country
Western music, Mexican music, or steel drums are appropriate for other kinds of events. For an elegant evening affair, a harpist,
pianist, or string quartet can create the dignified atmosphere you'll need.
Games can help to foster team
spirit among employees -- and they can be just plain fun for events to which families with children are invited. In either
case, people will be more comfortable and willing to play if you have a games coordinator. The games coordinator works to
overcome the usual inhibitions of guests to get everyone involved, and to provide safe supervision of games.
Types of Shows
Should you have a formal stage
show, interactive entertainers throughout the event, something else, or everything? This is usually determined by the event's
nature, size, and budget.
If the event is dinner and a
show, then it's just a matter of working with your entertainment advisor to choose comedians, singers, magicians, animal acts,
and/or dancers. You'll need a stage or similar performing area. A show lasting between 30 and 60 minutes is often best, as
guests start to become restless after that time.
If the event is intended to 'roast'
or 'spoof' an honoree, then talented comedic or celebrity look-alike performers can fill this role hilariously, based on information
you provide about the honoree.
If you want interactive close-up
performers to 'work the crowd' throughout the event, there are many to choose from. People love to be photographed with celebrity
look-alikes, who can also be hired to mix and mingle throughout the course of your event. (Some look-alikes such as Elvis,
Lucy, Marilyn, and Groucho can even do formal shows with singing and/or comedy.) Fortune tellers (who can also perform
as palm readers, Tarot readers, and handwriting analysts) are a popular choice, usually hired for the duration of the event.
Petting zoos and animals-with-trainers
(such as birds or monkeys) are also popular, and are usually organized so that guests can enjoy them on their own schedules
during the event.
Guests also love to receive cartoon
drawings of themselves, rendered by a professional caricaturist. You can even have the caricaturist's drawing paper pre-printed
with your company name or logo.
If your event is at a park or
other outside location, check to see if electricity is available. If there is no electricity, you might need to rent a generator.
Additionally, some parks require you to obtain a permit to hold an event there. Contact your local parks service to
Lawsuits arising from entertainment
events are exceedingly rare. But they can happen. So do make sure that your entertainment provider is insured -- and don't
be afraid to ask for proof of insurance. Be advised however, that this insurance does not cover liability your company might
incur. For any significant event, the company's insurer should be contacted to ensure that the event is covered. In cases
where this is difficult to arrange, clients can sometimes be added as insured under the entertainment provider's insurance.