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Basic Event Overview

Questions to Ask Before You Begin

The questions below may assist you as you begin the planning process for your event.  These will help provide a framework as the event develops and evolves, and will help with a focused direction and effective use of resources.  Well-organized and well-executed events provide opportunities to build on and strengthen the positive reputation of UMBC.

Goals and Objectives:
  • What are the key goals and objectives of this event as it relates to the 50th and/or alumni engagement?
  • Who is the target audience?
  • What is the desired outcome and what do you want your guests to take away from this experience?
  • How will you gauge the effectiveness of your event? (client/audience survey, statistical data)
Planning and Programming:
  • Who will be the lead producer on this event?
  • What is your budgeted amount, and from where are the funds coming?
  • What day of the week will this event be held? (Consider your audience when choosing date/time i.e. Monday’s are difficult for attendance, consider traffic when selecting time of day, consider your catering budget when selecting time of day)
  • What type of event is this? (meeting, reception, dinner, performance, etc.)
  • What are your program elements? (speakers, format, video, AV presentation, performers, catering, etc.)
  • In what order will your program elements flow?
  • Are VIPs invited and if so, who will handle the event flow logistics?
Communication:
  • How are you going to invite your audience? (print invitation, email invitation, social media, website, etc.)
  • From where will your list of invitees come?
  • After the invitation, how will you promote your event? (social media, email follow ups, website, fliers, etc.)
Logistics:
  • Have you reserved your location?
  • If food and beverages are planned, have you selected a caterer?
  • Have you identified your AV needs and who will be providing them?
  • Where will you have your guests park?
  • Have you deigned your space layout? (tables, chairs, stage, registration, food prep)
  • Will you need photography or videography?
  • Who will be managing the RSVP lists?
  • Will VIPs be invited and if so, who will be the point person?
  • Have you considered dietary needs?
  • How will you accommodate special needs?
  • How many people will you need to staff the event, and have you identified who they will be?
  • Will you need to order plaques, awards, speaker gifts, etc.?
Post Event:
  • Who will be responsible for getting alumni attendee information to the alumni office?
  • Who will be responsible for completing the final expense report?
  • Will you be sending out a survey to participants?