This Event Planning Secret Will Help You Minimize Stress & Increase Productivity

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TIME IS THE ENEMY

Anyone who has planned an event knows time is the enemy. Unlike problems like a tight budget, time is finite with no option to negotiate. Any event is a race against time. This post will show you how to win the race with an effective backstage plan.
 

Time vs. Event Planners

 

WHAT IS THE BACKSTAGE?

The backstage is anything the audience does not see. In any event, the backstage has two basic sections – the Green Room (GR) and the Dressing Room (DR).

If you think of any event as a house – the green room is the living room; the dressing room is the bedroom. In the green room, guests should be able to network, do interviews, eat and relax backstage. In a dressing room, guests should be able to freshen up and change their outfits in private.

 

WHAT IS BACKSTAGE PLANNING?

Backstage plans are strategies for all behind the scene activities. Backstage planners design and organize green rooms and dressing rooms for any event. After 9 years in the events industry, we know that the best planners use backstage plans.
 

DEFENDING BACKSTAGE BUDGETS

What is the difference between the green room and the dressing room?

As an event planner, you must answer that question when you justify your budget. You must describe the difference to explain the value of both rooms for a successful event. If you think lumping both of the costs for the client is easier, think again. Event planning is a business that depends on your reputation. If clients do not understand your budget, they feel cheated. Be transparent by separating the green and dressing rooms as line items in your budget.
 

THE DRESSING ROOM

A dressing room is a personal set up based on an individual or group’s specific requests. Since the dressing room is a personal space, guests use this space to calm their pre-stage jitters. So, you must think one step ahead about EVERY SINGLE DETAIL when planning the dressing room.
 
For example, what temperature of water should be available to your guests? Serving ice cold instead of room temperature water could ruin a singer’s performance. How? Cold water can cause vocal cords to tense up on stage.
 
Getting the smallest details right requires experience and expertise. We’ve learned a lot about precision from working with local and international acts – it’s not an easy sometin.
 
 

THE GREEN ROOM

When you design a green room, you must think about all the factors to make the room a positive space for everyone. The two most important questions to ask your clients are “who and how many?”
 
Who are we hosting in the green room?
Knowing details about your guests is important when organizing a green room. For example, you must consider the branded items in the greenroom for a headline artist. Imagine a green room full of CocaCola products for an artist that’s a Pepsi ambassador. That is sloppy work! If you think no one cares about the brand of water in the green room, think again. Your clients EXPECT you to think about, know and ask about these details. It is your job to care.
 
How many people will be in the green room?
Green rooms as a communal space. You must plan for family, friends, posse, fans and journalists and more in the green room. Design and organize the room in a way that maximizes the space available.

 

GETTING CREATIVE IN ANY SPACE

 
With backstage planning – you can’t always get what you want. But if you try sometimes you get what you need. Sometimes the spaces you have to work with are not suitable for your backstage plans. That’s where your creativity comes in.
 
In 2011, we worked on a fundraising dinner for The Lagos Preparatory School. Our guests included The Mo’hits crew, Alexander O’neil, Wyclef Jean and their respective bands. It was exciting till we found out we had to create backstage spaces in classrooms!
 
How did we execute? Our first priority was to create a floor plan and that didn’t disrupt any drawings and paintings in the room. Next, we brought in sofas to protect the classroom chairs. Finally, we placed NO SMOKING signs to manage activity in the room.
 
When using a venue, boost your reputation by preserving the integrity of the spaces you work in. A bad reputation will make venues skeptical to work with you.
 

OUTSOURCING

An event can be so overwhelming that the backstage becomes an afterthought. When your staff is at full capacity, outsource your backstage planning to professionals. To hire the right team, consider their experience, contingency plans, and reputation. Naija is still Naija. Finding professional backstage hospitality teams in Nigeria can be challenging. The field is still very niche. The Green Room Nigeria offers the best backstage planning services in the business. After all, we started it. As Miss Lily says,
 
‘there will be times when room temperature water is more appreciated than champagne. It is our duty to know the difference’
 
Follow us on Instagram for a sneak peek at what happens backstage: @greenroomng

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