Best Practices for Managing Complex Events

Diane Drey
Diane Drey


Complex event planning and management for your organization is no easy task. Mile-long to-do lists. Details that make your head spin and eyes cross. Listen, we get it. Contain the chaos with these event management tips and best practices. They’ll simplify the complexity of your next event and ensure that it’s memorable and measurable for your event attendees.

  1. Try on Your Event Attendees’ Shoes

    • Figuratively, of course. What can event attendees expect? No surprises of the unpleasant variety. Help them prepare.
    • Share goals and event objectives
    • Provide detailed attire information
    • Check weather
    • Provide a general agenda with time frames 
    • Play up event destination highlights 
    • Relay any cultural expectations / tips
  2. Find your Mobile Mojo 

    • Provide detailed facility maps
    • Offer a clear agenda with times, locations, levels
    • Socialize speaker profiles
    • Excite them with activity/session descriptions
    • Offer personalized agendas, or enable them to personalize your event
    • Crowd source session content and questions in advance 
    • Print badges on-demand to allow customization and last-minute changes 
  3. A Little Event Agenda Advice

    • Do you have large groups for your business sessions? For greater efficiency, consider having presenters rotate instead of attendees.
    • Think about food placement—put event attendees where they need to be instead of where they are. People will move to food!
    • Walk the property/event venue to make sure things are placed in logical order. Sometimes it looks good on a hotel map, but in person…not so much.
    • Place the hospitality/registration desk in a highly visible location.  
    • There is always a place for signage and technology, but nothing beats a friendly face. An actual person to help direct attendees is a great personal touch!

For ideas on how to better navigate complex events and turn your event into an experience, check out SHIFT: Strategic Event Solutions

Diane Drey

Diane Drey

Diane Drey has spent 20+ years at ITA Group and is currently the manager of travel direction. She’s passionate about the challenge and adrenaline of bringing thousands of people together on an event, and has been around the world with ITA Group operations. In her free time, she enjoys travel, family and autism advocacy.