Guest Column - September/October 2014

The New Era of Corporate Events

By Paul Gordon

Business events in the 21st century have, more often than not, fallen short of many organizations' expectations. The fault is not necessarily with the actions and plans of any particular individual, but with the process itself. Venues and show-runners specialize in creating a uniform approach to companywide events in order to appease the desires of senior-level executives and event planners to achieve the desired ROI. However, what's left is an event that lacks any trace of character. Poor execution can also derail just about any plan, no matter how good it may have looked on the drawing board. Each of these aspects, when combined with a group of attendees that can quickly grow apathetic, has the ability to stifle momentum and decidedly stall an organization's efforts.

Fortunately, the benefits of hosting a professional event outweigh any potential negatives. A dynamic team, or one that's not afraid to go beyond the prescribed "protocol," is far more effective than a static one. Performing the same tasks in the same manner in the same location day after day can soon become the epitome of monotony. By breaking this routine, your employees have the chance to thrive and feel appreciated while simultaneously setting up your organization to succeed.

Regardless of size or cost, events are exceedingly worthwhile. This is because at their best, creativity will flourish, age-old business practices can be reinvented and group morale can reach new heights—all by virtue of an environment designed to spur positivity. This end result can come from a recognition event, training program or even a simple team-building session. There are plenty of positive outcomes to obtain. However, the difference between an event that produces eye-opening results and an event that merely sputters to a conclusion is sizeable. With the right steps, putting on an effective show can be simple.

For one, it is important to note that there is no so such thing as a "cookie cutter" formula to follow when putting together a reward or recognition event. A custom approach is a winning approach, especially when considering the various tastes of all your attendees, as well as the need to meet the goals of the organization.

Organizations that want to remain competitive need to spend time working with a loyalty provider to design elements that will attract and grow their revenue, help to drive their organization forward and, most importantly, retain top talent.

Segmentation, by definition, speaks to a strategy of dividing up and organizing a large group by common interests and expectations. Whether it is by age, home location or position within the company, the ability to specifically target individuals with an aspirational and unique experience or gift gives the organization an opportunity to turn a middling corporate gathering into a unique one. Genuine appreciation is nearly impossible to understate, and the addition of multiple targeted gifts is guaranteed to generate positive feedback.

The impact of a memorable company event, especially when bringing in a recognition element, speaks directly to your employees—your most valuable asset—reinforcing your investment and commitment to them.