How often do you find yourself knee-deep in the event planning process, overwhelmed by all the things that still need to get done, thinking something like “If only there was someone else who could do THIS!” Whether that’s creating an amazing invitation, calling venues and updating event info, sorting through strategies to make the event extra incredible…the list of things that could be done, should be done (but at this point might not get done) seems to be ever expanding.

But somehow you make it through, and then every year you wind up in the same position, slogging through the same number of tasks and a growing list of to-do’s…because it’s just so hard to really get around to bringing someone on.

Maybe you tell yourself you don’t want to go through the whole hiring process for just a temporary need.

Or you imagine going through the hassle of training someone to take these tasks on, and it feels like you might as well just do them yourself after all.

It could be you’re so overwhelmed by the whole process you just have no idea what you would even have another person doing, you just know you could use some help!

Honestly…it could even be that you LOVE event planning, but every year it feels as if you’ve bitten off more than you can chew. And even though you want to plan your own event, you could benefit from a bit of support to take some of the pressure off.

even with a smaller budget, you can still get help from a Professional Conference Organiser!

Here’s what we want you to know. Repeating this pattern of stressing yourself out, making it through the planning process alone, and then restarting the cycle of overwhelm is not only unhealthy, but unnecessary as well. There is no reason that you should have to take on this level of stress when you could find a way to delegate parts of the conference organising process to someone else.

Notice how I said “parts”? Because at Auaha, we understand that if you had the budget to hand over 100% of the planning process to a Professional Conference Organiser, you likely would have done that already! Too many event managers assume that if they can’t pay for a complete professional service, then they have to go it alone. This is simply not true!

When your budget just won’t stretch for a full outsourcing service, you can still get help and relieve some of the stress that comes along with a big event. You can simply choose an area of the process where you could use the most help (likely whatever is stressing you out the most!) and then bring us in – we’ll work with you (and your budget!) to help you produce the event you’ve been dreaming of.

And remember when we talked about how it just feels like too much of a hassle to train someone new to handle these details? When you bring in professionals, you don’t have to train us. In fact, we often find that the organisers we work with finish the event feeling like they learned quite a few tips and tricks they are excited to implement the next time around. So not only are you making THIS year’s event better…you’re setting yourself up for less stress and more success in years to come as well.

At Auaha, we have years of experience, we’re constantly discovering new venues, we love finding innovative ways of pleasing conference delegates, and we are up on the latest and greatest in terms of event technology and processes.

As a Professional Conference Organiser we are completely on your team, and we come with a full toolkit that we would love to help you implement. At the end of the day, you’ll know you are NOT alone, and you’ll have the support, encouragement, and advice of people who absolutely know what they’re doing and how to help your event succeed.

Sounding good? Let’s talk about my 5 top recommendations for managers and organisers looking to make an event planning investment:

1. Event StrategyThis is perfect for the organiser who tends to do pretty well once a plan is in place…but suffers from overwhelm and a touch of shiny object syndrome when there are too many options on the table. We’ll sit down with you and make sure you have a clear vision, objectives, and plan in place for your upcoming event. A full day with a PCO is an excellent investment in terms of both time and money. If you want a road map to success that you can implement with clarity and share with your team…this is what you want!

2. Delegate services:  Maybe you’ve already got the big picture, you’re ready to hit the road, and then you find yourself stressing over the technology piece. You KNOW conference organisers don’t rely on paper invites and RSVP’s anymore…but you’re at a loss for how to implement a more modern plan of attack. No worries! A PCO can provide online registration management tools that they can actually be set up AND managed for you. This can include online delegate registration, responses to delegate inquiries, receipting of payments and delegate communication. It means you don’t have to worry about the registration process, which is amazing because your time is way too valuable to have it all being spent answering endless streams of delegate questions. Plus, you get to avoid using a really cheap or basic option that will end up being more difficult than helpful.

3. Budget & accounting:  Feel like you have no real clue about “normal” event costs? Worried you’re going to overspend and get into hot water with the boss? (Or under spend and come across looking cheap to your delegates?) PCO’s not only know how to start a realistic event budget, they also have a really good idea of local event costs and can get you a strong ballpark idea of what a realistic budget will be without spending hours playing phone tag with suppliers to get price estimates. PCO’s can also take care of the really fun stuff: bookkeeping and tax compliance! (If you hadn’t even thought of that part, no worries. That’s why we’re here!) We can help you streamline your finances all the way from the initial budget to the actual post-event financial report.

4. Venue & supplier management:  You know all those estimates and quotes we were able to bypass when putting a first budget together? Well…you can’t avoid them forever. You will need to actually identify possible venues and suppliers, establish price points, and make commitments. And honestly…this part is tricky if you haven’t done it before (or don’t do it that often). Which is why bringing in a team of suppliers is one of the things a PCO does best! Not only do we regularly interact with a wide variety of local providers, we also know pretty quickly which ones will best meet your needs, we can advise you on which ones you simply must have, what’s worth spending a little extra on if you have room in the budget and (drum roll please) we can often negotiate better prices than the average person because of our industry knowledge and connections. The best PCO’s know how to manage a team of suppliers from the very first engagement all the way through to event delivery and post-event follow up. And we bring ALL that knowledge straight to you!

5. Advice and guidance:  Maybe you feel like it’s not your first rodeo, you’ve got a decent handle on things, and you have confidence you can tackle the event planning process. We love that about you!  However, when you do run into snags, you find it frustrating when your work partners offer vague feedback like “Looks fine to me!” or “I’m sure you’ll figure it out!”…and then you get stuck trying to make it better when you have a limited amount of time and energy to spend on all those little things that tend to pop up. You can opt to organise regular meetings with a PCO in order to check in and get the sort of help you actually need. A Professional Conference Organiser is full of creative ideas, know how to manage risk (and can spot potential hazards from a mile away), have processes for EVERYTHING under the sun, and have great advise on how to best approach a myriad of event planning surprises. This is the best time (and financial) investment if you’d like to receive personalised and professional coaching and mentoring – it’s literally a sounding board, counselor and productivity doctor all in one! For an average conference, you’d likely want to plan for 8-10 sessions, spread from beginning to end.

If all this sounds amazing, but you’re just not quite sure if it’s for you, I’d encourage you to book a discovery call (free, of course!) and chat with me about what a customised roadmap for your event might look like.

You might find yourself surprised at just how much a Professional Conference Organiser can do for you!

Mā te wā!

Sandra Julian
Event Director

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