Remember…It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Applause Productions & Entertainment

During this busy holiday season it is easy to get bogged down with business proposals, personal shopping, and a million other demands on your time. But remember…it’s the most wonderful time of the year. The sage often says reflection is a path to growth. Take the time to look back, see where you are now, and be grateful, no matter where that place may be. Lessons come in all forms.

1. Begin by recognizing any success. Whether you fell short of third-quarter goals or hit the mark beyond what you anticipated, there are successes to be celebrated. Focus on the positive, even if your company did not experience great monetary gains this year. Perhaps you have an outstanding employee that received stellar feedback or you were able to finish the year without layoffs. These gains need to be recognized and applauded, for they will keep you in the right frame of mind.

2. Mistakes are growth opportunities for those willing to learn and improve. True leadership requires an attitude of gratefulness no matter what the situation. A humble acceptance of shortfalls, without blame, can lead to progress that outshines what came before. In this way, team members are motivated to find solutions rather than focus only on problems.

3. Plan for what can be, not what is. With the technology revolution, a global economy now prevails. Do not hold on to what used to be; embrace the possibilities rather than regretting what was. Shaking hands and looking someone in the eye are becoming more difficult with distance and digital communication. This doesn’t have to be a negative. Learn how to use your tools and discover the opportunities waiting to be found.

Details That Can Make or Break Your Event

Applause Productions & Entertainment

The saying goes, “The devil is in the details.” This adage could not be more true than when planning an event. We’ve already explained the importance of planning, communication, and the necessary aspects to producing a seamless event. Now it’s time to focus on those minute details that can make or break your event.

1. Be proactive and brainstorm possible challenges. As you meet with your event director and team members, you will have conceptualized the theme for the event. However, it’s important to discuss any possible challenges that might arise and have the ability to contact key players at a moment’s notice. Let all members of the production team know who has the authority to make those last minute changes that may need to be made on the spot. Stay in touch with each of your team members. Have a hard copy of relevant cell phone numbers and emails for your team and other vendors that may have a role in your production.

2. Check and re-check technical requirements. Be sure to re-check stage requirements, mikes, wireless microphones or lavs, green room size and accessibility to the stage, chairs in the green rooms, water, etc. These needs are a priority for entertainment; however, the director’s priority is the production. As a result, you must be diligent about these necessities. All too often these details are forgotten until only hours or minutes before the event begins. You are left trying to find the site contact person to produce these requirements and, at this point, they have a million other things to do. Schooli  tables for makeup, and even lighting for a pipe and drape green room, should be in place before the entertainment arrives. It’s impossible to put on makeup and dress in the dark. When the minute details are taken care of, talent can go immediately into their preparation with ease.

3. Understand that time is important. Even though your contract is signed with definite start times and particulars, you will need to re-check the scheduling of the event, since call times and show times can change at the last minute. Make sure your contract provides an additional fee in the event that your entertainment has to wait for an extended period of time before performing. Sometimes a speaker or awards presentation can go extraordinarily long, causing the performance time to be delayed. This can happen and entertainment expects to be compensated.

Preparing the way for a great event

Applause Productions & Entertainment

Successful events don’t just happen. They are the culmination of hard work, talent, and organization. Nothing is more important in the organizational process than clear, well-thought-out planning. Here is how to prepare the way for a great event:

1. Create schedules. This includes both a timeline for actions that need to be finished prior to the event, and also the talent and activities that happen during the event. When you’ve finalized the talent that will perform during the party, plan the ornamental activities such as photo opportunities, green screen, greeters, etc. Make sure to plan the set-up time for all talent and activities, as well as the time it actually begins.

2. Create a spreadsheet of vital information. All pertinent details, including date, time, venue name and location, contact information, and theme should be organized into one easy-to-access document. Also, build enough time into the schedule to walk the site with strict attention to room size, stage size and location, electrical accessibility, and green room area.

3. Facilitate communication. Make sure that your administrative details, such as accounting and payment schedules, are clearly communicated at the outset of the process. It is standard in the industry to provide a 50 percent deposit. This secures your talent for the expected time and date. Final payment is always expected the week prior to the event. Communicate these payment considerations and your administrative worries will be few. Good talent expects professional courtesy, which means following the above protocol.