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Effective Planning Makes Great Leaders

Effective Planning Makes Great Leaders

After more than three decades of working closely with many hundreds of leaders, I have observed that perhaps the single biggest obstacle to many of them, from a technical as opposed to attitudinal standpoint, is their ability and willingness to devote sufficient time, attention, and importance to the entire planning process. I refer to planning as a process because it is not a one step, one time, I have a plan, event. Rather, planning requires a number of variables including the proper attitude, knowledge, competent advisers, contingencies (also known as the what ifs), and a real commitment to the process of planning to lead.

1. Why must one plan to lead? Many people ascend to positions of leadership without any compelling vision or goals for the organization. They often state that they will rely on others (the catch phrase is usually, “I don’t like to micromanage because I believe in my officers and staff.”), and seem to believe that they simply can achieve results by stepping aside and delegating duties and responsibilities. While delegating should be encouraged, a true leader realizes that he must be careful in who he bestows responsibility, and that the individual is prepared and willing to commit fully to get the duty performed (or job done). Unfortunately, I have observed many individuals who consider themselves leader have their tenure face peril because they did not have a plan to oversee and get regular progress reports, etc.

2. Great leaders have positive, can do attitudes. They fully commit to do the best possible job they can, and take the process of careful planning seriously. However, these individuals must realize that at some point, planning must lead to the achievement of a vision and/ or goals, and that plans must become action plans, and action plans must become viable and essential actions, bringing about some sort of change, modification, or tweaking, if called for.

3. Leaders must understand the need for contingency or backup planning. Every plan should examine, in detail, the inevitable what- ifs, and in doing so, have backup plans prepared for nearly every eventuality. Great leaders always plan for inevitable contingencies and circumstances.

4. Before there can be effective planning, a leader must be willing to undergo specified, and in- depth leadership training. All too many times I have witnessed individuals who take these programs one day, and almost immediately continue the same-old, same-old behavior anyway. Training must bring about true learning. That training and learning should then be used in situations where an individual has partial responsibility, with oversight. Only after all of this is satisfactorily and successfully done, does a potential leader have the opportunity to become a true and effective one, because he now possesses both the needed knowledge and expertise.

Organizations must stress planning and learning. This planning should include leadership training, event planning, and continuous strategic planning, including evaluation and reevaluation of the mission statement. With thoroughly planning, organizations develop forward- thinking, true leaders.…

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Why You Shouldn’t Buy Cheap Handheld Metal Detectors

Why You Shouldn’t Buy Cheap Handheld Metal Detectors

In this life there are certain things you can skimp on and in the world’s current economic state I strongly suggest that you do just that. I personally buy generic whenever spending more on the name brand is not advantageous enough to be worth spending the extra dollars and let me tell you, that happens a lot. Toilet paper doesn’t have to be name brand so why spend the extra money. Over the Counter medications? Forget about name brand when you are literally throwing your money away on the exact same drugs you are getting in the generic brand. I don’t remember when the last time I bought name brand cereal was and don’t understand why anybody does. Nobody should be drinking soda but if anyone does and they don’t buy generic I am at a loss for words, it’s all just sugar anyway. The price of batteries borders on insane yet so many people choose Duracell or Energizer when there is usually a much cheaper alternative generic battery sitting on the same shelf and at a fraction of the price. Sure the Duracell’s may last a bit longer but is it worth it when the batteries cost almost 3 times as much in some cases?

My point in all of this is that there are some things you can save on and going generic isn’t going to be a matter of life and death. If the paper towels you bought aren’t quite as absorbent as the name brand and it takes an extra towel to clean up some spilled milk is that really going to have a profound impact on anybody? Is it something you are going to spend even a split second pondering over? Probably not.

What if the product in question is one that could literally mean the difference between life and death? That sounds like a product you would never want to skimp on and handheld metal detectors are certainly one of those products. If there is a concert or sporting event where a substandard security scanning device is being used and it malfunctions, allowing someone with a gun to enter the premises, the consequences could be tragic. Human lives could potentially be lost and there is no price tag on a human life and as such anyone considering holding an event of any kind should absolutely buy only the best when it comes to these devices. Garrett metal detectors, for example, are the handheld metal detectors that professional security, law enforcement and the U.S. military has been using for almost half a century now. That’s a pretty darn good indicator that Garrett is the brand to trust and the one you should use if your guests safety means anything to you whatsoever.

Stay Safe,

Carl Vouer…

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Become a Top Wedding Planner – DO’s and DON’Ts of Planning Events for Free

Become a Top Wedding Planner – DO’s and DON’Ts of Planning Events for Free

Knowing how to plan weddings and events is a valuable skill. It is so valuable that many professional and non-profit organizations will approach you asking you to devote your time to planning their event in exchange for opportunities to market to their group.

Many new wedding and events planners agree to do them in hopes that they will get “noticed” and pick up a lot of new clients.

But you have to be very careful whenever you agree to work for free. You need to always make sure people understand you are a serious professional wedding and event planner who offers valuable services and is paid well for your skills and expertise.

Here are my DO’s and DON’Ts regarding working for free:

DO find out exactly what your responsibilities would be before you agree.

You need to know if you will be required to just find a venue, send invitations and manage RSVPs, or plan and manage the entire event by yourself from start to finish.

DON’T believe it when the group tells you that you will get a lot of business from planning the event.

You may get some exposure, but unless the group includes a large number of brides and others in your target market, you may not get very many opportunities.

DO write a contract, just like you would for a paying client, and ask the group to sign it.

Clearly state what you plan to do, how much you would charge if they were a paying client and add the statement “fee waived.” Then state what you expect the group to give you in lieu of money, such as recognition as a sponsor.

A contract will help make it clear to others that you are a professional and it will help you to see how much of your valuable services you are offering for free.

DON’T be afraid to say, “NO”

You plan events to earn a living. Any event you do for free takes your time, energy, and even money, if you need to drive around making arrangements or use your own materials and equipment to make the event run smoothly. Don’t be afraid to decline if the opportunity offers little or no value to you.

You might be thinking, “I don’t have many clients right now, I might as well do it anyway.” But if you aren’t already working with brides or other clients, you should be spending your time actively marketing your services, both online and offline. So only take on a free event if it gives you an opportunity to market yourself or is a charitable cause that you want to support with your time and energy.…

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5 Things Event Planners Need to Know Before Going Green

5 Things Event Planners Need to Know Before Going Green

Sustainability is here to stay. So what information do event planner’s need to know before making the commitment to ‘Go Green’? Read on to find out what our top 5 suggestions are:

1. Many shades of Green

First of all, you need to understand that there are many shades of ‘green’. i.e. people have different expectations of what exactly classifies as ‘green’. While one client may be satisfied using recycled paper, another may demand an entire stage set built of sustainable material. Ensure that you do your research and understand what ethics and values are important to your client or key stakeholders, and ensure you are able to meet their needs.

2. People are not mind readers

If you make the decision to go green, you need to make it known! Be sure to include this fact in your event marketing. Show your stakeholders what you are doing to be more greener and how being more sustainable is of value for them! But make sure you follow it through. According to The Drum, 81% of consumers place more importance on what companies actually do rather than what they say.

3. Prices of premium green products are decreasing

A major obstacle for most companies in the past has been the extra cost associated with these green products. Well good news is, there are already some green products cheaper than the alternatives – such as branded paper products. A 2009 Mintel survey forecasts 19% growth for green products by 2013 based on this factor, making your goals to go green more affordable and attainable.

4. Be aware of the benefits

There are various benefits associated with going green. Some of these include; – Reduced environmental impact – Cost savings – Competitive advantage / promotional benefits – Stakeholder satisfaction. Bottom line – going green has economic, cost saving, environmental and social benefits.

5. Process makes perfect!

When going green it is important you establish commitment. Develop realistic guidelines / objectives (eg. all of our events for 2010 will use recycled conference bags) and communicate these promises to your staff and stakeholders.

In summary, it is a known fact that the events industry is often criticised for it’s tendency to create waste. Therefore it is inevitable that the issue of sustainability is becoming more than just a trend for our industry, but rather a necessity.

It seems that green is the new black. By going green, you are not only ensuring the longevity of our planet, but also that of our profession.…

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Party Supplies – Setting the Theme For Your Special Occasion

Party Supplies – Setting the Theme For Your Special Occasion

When celebrating any event, there is a pivotal element that can aid you in moving an occasion from a mere get together to an unforgettable party, and that element is party supplies. Whereas a theme might have been insufficiently expressed and quickly forgotten, it becomes spectacular, unique and focused when you incorporate the right props and supplies for your event.

Regardless of the occasion, a party always benefits from having been well planned and orchestrated. Using party supplies to establish your theme helps to keep you focused on what you are celebrating and not get distracted by unnecessary additions or side themes. Be it birthday, bridal shower, or office party, implementing the use of party supplies gives you an effective head-start towards bringing the occasion off successfully. Party supplies speak for themselves in that they show the host or hostess has invested real thought and planning into the event. As the host your load is lightened, the party supplies visually reiterating the theme of the event and relieving you of the sole responsibility for setting (and maintaining) the mood. This is especially true of large events, where it would be impossible for the host to greet and entertain every guest individually the entire time. When you have a chosen theme it is vitally important that you stay within that theme while planning. Even worse than having no supplies is having in-congruent ones. Incongruity will quickly deter from the intended mood and create a disastrous feeling of chaos incompatible with the organized, thoughtful one intended. To avoid such a disaster it is advisable to have a clear plan of how and to what extent you plan to use party supplies.

To accomplish this initial planning it is often best to first compare the location for the party with your budget. Consider what the occasion really demands and how important the party supplies will be to its success. Whereas for one event the supplies will be crucial to the entire mood, for another they may be merely supplemental, and budgeting should be planned accordingly. For example, outdoor events in gardens, recreational locations, etc, already have the mood set by their surroundings and may require only those supplies unprovided by nature, such as your eatery and seating. On the other hand, a child’s birthday party being held in your kitchen or a dance in the local gymnasium will require a great deal more in order to establish the desired theme.

Once you have a clear idea of what you wish to accomplish, it behooves you to find a supplier through which you can get the bulk (if not all) of your supplies. This has numerous benefits that will enhance both your efficiency and enjoyment of the task at hand. One of the best benefits is that you are more likely to keep a firm idea of what you want when you are buying it all together. Another is that the chance of incongruity is nearly eliminated, as suppliers generally have a full range of themed supplies which enables you to help you stay focused on your theme and keep all of your supplies matched.…

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Event Planning School – How To Become An Expert Event Planner

Event Planning School – How To Become An Expert Event Planner

More and more people are entering in the world of event management because this career has proven to be very fruitful. It is such an interesting career that you will never get bored working as an event planner. There are many event planning businesses that have gained a lot of popularity around the work. Moreover, this field has diversified so much and there are special courses and certificates are designed for it.

There are so many people who find it better to hand the arrangements of their event to professionals rather than doing it themselves because no matter how much efforts they make they can never compete with the outstanding work that the professional event planning firms deliver.

Now there is so much competition developed in this field that just like other field in the world it has become necessary for people to enroll in an event planning school and gain proper education otherwise you will not be hired. Experience is not the only thing that counts, now you should be properly trained to handle all the tasks related to this profession. This can only happen if you get education from event planning schools.

It is not difficult to attain the certificates that these schools offer because they are also available online and if you are one of those people who assume that online education is garbage then you need to realize the fact that in this era almost everything is done over the World Wide Web. There are many reputable online schools that provide quality education and do not let your money waste. The courses that these schools offer are not lengthy like the four years bachelor’s degree and they are not even that costly.

These courses will enhance your skills and make your informative about event planning. This field is not as easy as it seems you need to be very dedicated, organized and energetic and you can learn all of this in an event planning school. They will also teach you how to attract and impress your clients and gain big profits. Some schools even provide internship which will familiarize you with the professional world.

The career of event management is going to flourish in the coming time because there is a great demand of event planners in every aspect of life. Hence, find yourself a reputable event planning schools in which you can study properly and become an expert event planner.…

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Rely on Professional Catering For Party Success

Rely on Professional Catering For Party Success

Is your daughter ready to get married? Does she know just what she wants at the reception? This is a most special event and a professional caterer can help to make it beautiful and memorable. Plan the happy event well ahead of time. You can’t cook and serve gourmet food for a large group of people. A wedding cake is a work of art beyond most people’s capabilities. Take all the stress out of this event and enjoy the day to the fullest.

Request the perfect kosher feast for friends and relatives for your child’s bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah. Arrange a fiftieth-anniversary party for your parents or grandparents. Make the most of all these occasions. Get the help you need to make decisions about currently popular foods and drinks. Find out the cost well ahead of time.

If you want the party in your home it can be arranged. The food can be prepared and served in your home. You may prefer a banquet facility of your choice or choose the one provided by the catering service. Everything you need is provided including china, crystal glasses, large serving trays and as many folding chair as you need for guests.

The catering service will help you select all food and serving items. You may want a particular color china, napkins and centerpieces for the tables. All details are made for you, from appetizers to what wine to serve with which food. You can order a fantastic wedding cake with decorations from flowers to jewels made of frosting. You can have a large layered cake plus a small groom’s cake in a different flavor.

You may be planning to have a sophisticated wedding banquet or a casual beach wedding with the barefoot bride and groom. Match the food to the casual setting. Seafood is appropriate for the beach setting. Or, the main course could include tender ribs cooked to perfection outdoors. On the tables you may want floral arrangements on driftwood with seaweed accenting the arrangement. When it is an evening reception, use pretty lanterns to illuminate the party.

Chocolate fountains and ice sculptures are popular items to include. An ice sculpture can represent anything you wish. Fish, dolphins and the Venus de Milo have all been sculpted in ice. You have so many choices to make for this special event. A chocolate fountain needs no explanation. Like a champagne fountain it is always welcomed by your guests.

If you plan a corporate banquet, book the banquet hall well in advance of the date. You can order china and tablecloths in corporate colors. You can have small candles with your corporate logo imprinted on them for mementos your guests can take home. Decorate the cake with a large replication of the corporate logo. A ceremonial cake-cutting ceremony will be a wonderful end to a delicious dinner.

Start your evening with a cocktail hour with a string quartet playing quietly in a corner. Serve hors d’oeuvres on large platters with waiters offering them to your guests. Include a bartender at an open bar, which means the drinks are free. A disc jockey or singer might be favored for a wedding instead of the string quartet.…

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Event Planning Careers – What Do You Need To Start An Event Planning Business

Event Planning Careers – What Do You Need To Start An Event Planning Business

Are you thinking about starting your own event planning business? Maybe you have been involved in the arrangements of an event or two and people have really appreciated your work and told you to start your own business.

Event planning careers are very interesting and you can earn in millions if you took the all of those steps that are necessary to run this business successfully.

Become skillful and gain experience:

Pursuing career in event planning is not that easy. There are many skills that you need posses in yourself. You have to become more creative; always be aware of all the latest trends. You also have to become multi-tasking and energetic. In addition to that, you have to organize yourself; do everything on the time without any hassle.

You can outshine all of these skills more by acquiring professional courses related to event managing offered by different institutions. They will educate and train you so that you become an expert in this field.

Funds to secure your business:

Funds are necessary for a business because of the unpredictability of the world. You can predict some problems to some extend but anything can happen at any time. Therefore, it is important that you have back up money which you can utilize if anything goes wrong.

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Determine the category you want to follow:

In event planning careers there are many choices. They are mainly formal, informal, non-profit and social programs. Once you have gained enough experience in any one of these careers then you can choose to work on other projects. Start from working on smaller programs instead of jumping into a huge event that you make you nervous and turn into a failure. When you in organizing business, there are many people who are counting on you and if you fail then you cause trouble for others too.

Obtaining business insurance:

Acquire business insurance so that the business owner can secure his rights. There are quite a few types of insurances available for the businesspersons, so talk to an insurance advisor or an attorney to find information regarding this.

Expand your network of contractors:

In event planning business, you need to have good relations with other businesses because you will often need partnerships. You need to develop an infrastructure of the resources that are important in arranging an event. This can be build up with the help of administration, marketing or sales staff.

These are these most important things needed to run the event planning business.…