From the Ashes to the AFL Grand Final to the Rugby World Cup and even your kid’s local Netball game… we’ve all probably watched a little (or a lotta) sport lately.
The preparation, the sweat, the tears, the highs and the lows… sounds like the rollercoaster of emotions an event planner experiences on their average event, right?
Likewise, there are a few lessons you can learn from sports professionals. Ones that will help you perform at your best and ensure your event is a winner.
Choose your team wisely
Whether a team sport or an individual race, every pro athlete needs the right experts and people around them to support their journey and help them perform at their best. Behind the scenes there are coaches, physios, nutrition consultants, water runners… the list goes on.
As a pro event planner, you need supporters too. Not only is it crucial that you choose the best internal events team, but it’s important to select the right event partners too. A group of experts in their respective fields – from AV to styling to entertainment to catering… a good event partner will deliver results.
Don’t use the same game play over and over
Dare we say it… it’s boring! Crowds love to see new plays, and your opposition (i.e. your competitors) quickly learn your moves so if you don’t throw some surprises their way, they’ll usually come out on top.
Mix up your event format, decor, tech and content. Keep the audience guessing and by doing so, you’ll keep them coming back.
Preparation is key!
Practise. A lot. It’s an obvious one, but it’s so, so important. For athletes, being a ‘natural’ only takes them so far. History shows that the more prep work they put in, the more they’ll get back in results.
Same goes for event planners. Putting the time into pre-planning, pre-production work and diving into all the details will give you a greater chance of success. Prioritise rehearsals as they’re the best time to run through your content and iron out any potential issues.
Celebrate the wins
Consider an olympic swimmer. They train for hours every day for four years, working towards one 20-second race. Only one winner. Do you think they’d make it to race day without feeling they’ve hit some goals and achievements along the way?
Celebrating the little wins is super important for morale. A big party after winning the championship is well deserved. But celebrating a PB, a week-long training streak, or even just getting out of bed when you don’t feel up to it deserves at least a pat on the back.
Be kind to yourself, set and track small achievable goals, stay motivated and don’t beat yourself up when you’re feeling behind.
Be ready for anything
No matter how much you plan ahead and prepare for everything, there’ll always be a spanner thrown in the works.
In sport – players get injured. The opposition throws an unexpected play. Teams must be nimble enough to respond quickly.
In events – you should remain flexible. Be ready to respond to unforeseen situations calmly and sometimes you’ll just have to go with the flow. If you’ve prepared for the unknown, you’ll be ok.
Prioritise recovery time
A successful athlete will be strict with their nutrition, get lots of sleep, see a doctor when unwell and rest when rest is needed.
Every fitness mag will tell you that recovery time is essential for improved performance. And the same applies for event planners.
Whilst you’re putting in the hours for those late nights, early set-ups and spending event day on your feet running around the venue, make sure to schedule some R&R for yourself. You deserve a break! So take one.