If you’ve been tasked with planning a party, you have no small challenge ahead of you. Whether you’re planning an informal baby shower for a good friend, or organizing the office summer party for 300 people, the same good party planning practices apply.
Don’t get stressed
This is easier said than done, especially when there’s a party to plan. Minimizing your stress levels, however, will help you keep a calm head if things go wrong, and aid your ability to solve any problems that might arise during the planning process and the party itself. To a certain extent, you can’t control your stress levels, but you can take steps to alleviate the amount of anxiety you feel. Some of these are below, and involve planning as much of the party in advance as possible, having back-up plans, and enlisting the help of other people.
Plan well in advance
The more you can plan the different elements of a party in advance, the more likely you’ll be able to create a successful event with minimum stress. Once you have the necessary information like the budget and guest numbers, plan other aspects of the party, such as the venue, entertainment, and food, as far in advance as possible – even if you think these aspects will be easy to organize.
Create a party checklist
Make lists of everything you need to do, from creating and sending out invites, to organizing the music, venue and deciding on guest list. Next to each list item, specify a deadline for each task. This should be at least two weeks before you really need to complete the task, as then if preparations are delayed; you still have time to complete the planning.
Create back-up plans
You might assume that if you prepare for the party properly, you won’t need a back-up plan, but part of preparing for a party properly is to have a back-up plan. No matter how well you organize the different elements involved in a party, things outside of your control can go wrong. Having a back-up plan for food, drinks, entertainment and a venue means that, although it might not be ideal, the party can still go on, even if disaster strikes.
Ask for help
Depending on the size and complexity of the party, planning the event on your own is a huge responsibility. Part of successful planning is knowing when to delegate tasks to other people, so don’t be afraid to ask for help if you don’t feel you can manage, or if you have tasks on your to-do list that you’d rather others completed.
Focus on the guests
Even when you’re throwing a party for a birthday, wedding, baby shower, or other major life event, the focus of the party should be on the guests. It’s easy to get caught up in making the party perfect for the person who is supposed to be at the centre of the festivities. While this is still important, if you neglect to focus on what the party guests might want from the event too, you will end up with a room full of dissatisfied partygoers. Make sure your guest’s needs are provided for, and the party will flow.
Use Party Planning Apps
Just as it’s important to ask for help from other people, you might also find it useful to utilize a party planning or personal organizer tool, such as the iPartyGram app. Not only will this help you manage the guest list, but it will help you plan exactly what you need to do by the day of the party, and make sure you remember all those little details that can make the difference between a good party and a great party.