- Arrive early! No matter how much you plan, something unexpected usually happens. You cannot address these issues if you aren't there. The larger the event, the earlier all staff, volunteers, and security personnel need to arrive at the venue.
- Know who is doing what. In addition to having a volunteer-management plan, be sure you know what other event personnel, including police officers and security, custodians, and staff, will be doing and what you need them to do.
- Set up a volunteer meeting before the event. At least plan to have all ushers and staff at the event 30 minutes before the door-opening to review the plan. Police officers and security should be present.
- For complex or large-scale events, develop and bring a timeline (times that various vendors, speakers, and volunteers will arrive) to your planning meetings and event.
- Have volunteers on hand — you never know what may come up. Primary event organizers should not be tied down to necessary tasks at the event so they can respond to issues. If there is a problem at the event and the primary organizer is the only one taking tickets, how would he or she respond?
- Bring a telephone list that includes numbers of important offices, services, and volunteers.
- Door-management will make or break your event. You are responsible for managing the capacity of your event. Be sure you have developed a door-management plan and have adequate staffing available. Plan your ticket distribution and collection system appropriately. How will you greet and welcome guests?
- Remember to keep all entrances and exits as clear as possible.
- Plan an emergency services route, and keep it clear.
- Have an emergency contingency plan for inclement weather, bomb threat, etc.
Last Updated: Dec. 2, 2011