For a long time, the covid restrictions dictated that gatherings were not allowed, but as more and more cities, states and countries start allowing things to open up again, events are slowly creeping their way back into our daily life. This of course, isn’t events to the scale and extent of big concerts and large scale weddings, but we are starting to see more business gatherings, small weddings and hybrid events that have both an in-person component along with a virtual one.
It’s not impossible to have an event in today’s environment, but it is going to be a lot harder, and there will be a lot more things to consider. The key thing is focusing on safety and making sure people can carry out the measures that will keep everyone safe. Whether you’re planning a small business summit or planning a themed birthday party, remember to create a solid plan and stick to it. What does it take to plan a safe and successful event in the time of covid? Here are the key things you need to consider.
Start With The Numbers
The number of people that you’re going to have in attendance will have a lot of bearing on how the event will be structured. First, be clear on what your state’s maximum attendance is. That number should guide you in every other decision you’re going to make in this process. If the limit is 50 people, create your guest/attendant list with that number in mind. Don’t make the mistake of inviting a lot of people above the limit with the expectation of cancellations. Assume that everyone is going to say yes and work with that.
Location and Setting
Now that you know how many people are going to be at the event, it’s time to deal with the next critical thing, where your event is going to be held and what the setting is going to be. The worst thing in this pandemic is being in an enclosed space, so remember the key is open space, big rooms or even open air if need be. If there’s a lot of space, social distancing becomes easier, and people have room to move around freely without feeling restricted.
You can also have an event that’s a mix between indoor and outdoor. Companies like American Pavillion offer large tent rentals which can allow you to have your event on a large clearing of land, with a big tent so that there’s still an indoor component. This allows you to have a lot of space, but still shelter that isn’t a walled-in room. That is the perfect way to create a balance and to also cover your basis on keeping people safe. For people who are hosting a business conference or summit, there are ways to make sure that people can attend and still be safe. One thing you can do is spread everyone out, and instead of having many people at one table, you can have one person per table.
Whoever is going to attend your event has to know what the restrictions are in advance so that they are prepared. The last thing you want to do is brief your guests when they get there. When you invite them, give them a list of all the requirements from the social distancing, to how things will be set up and what will be expected of them. This gives them a chance to plan accordingly and also for you to know that you have guests who are fully aware. Guests want to know that you as the event organizer care about their safety. When we brief them beforehand, we show that we care and give them the peace of mind to have a good time.
The one thing that will make an event complicated is food and refreshments. Points where people gather are going to be potential areas where people can come in contact. Luckily reducing the numbers of attendants will help spread people out, and when it comes to how people eat and drink, having a wait staff who can serve people while they stay in one place can help, instead of a buffet. Also making sure people wear their masks anytime they are away from their tables will also reduce the chance of potential issues.
There are still ways to have a great event even if things are a little different to what we’re used to. The success of your event is really down to how well you plan it, and looking ahead to some of the issues that might arise, and following through with all the restrictions and requirements. Remember there is still the option of having a mix between online and in-person to cater to different people and to keep things like numbers manageable.