Why do events fail? After months of planning, why do things just start to go wrong on the D-day?

Many successful events held in 2017, particularly during the December holidays but many also flopped.

Some hosts are currently either visiting friends and family to apologise for happenings at their events or too ashamed or embarrassed to face their disappointed guests.

Planning is everything in any success story, including your events. So, what do you need to do differently in 2018?

Tinu Badejo is the Lead Consultant at Sterlage Events. Bounce News spoke with her after a successful event during the holidays where she wowed guests and her client.

She provides us with tips to help you plan and host better events in 2018 and beyond.

1. Know Your Budget

The first thing is to set a budget. Budget plays a vital role. How much can you afford to spend without breaking a bank?

Then you start thinking about how many guests you think your budget can host. You may need an event professional to help you here.

At least a caterer should know how much people a certain amount can feed, and so should a drink supplier be able to predict how much beer or soft drink should cater to your 120 people.

The issue many people have is the fear of paying an event planner from their little budget but here is what you need to know.

According to our expert; “Event planners charge based on your budget. A good one knows that, and she might demand 10-20% of your budget, which is negotiable.”

2. Get Good Deals Ahead

You need a way to get the best from your budget. You cannot afford to go for substandard items to cut cost.

Chances are that you may not know all the people you need to have a great party and that is one need upon which an event planner can be hired.

You need someone who can help negotiate and seal good deals from vendors. A good event planner must have great people skills.

And since you’re not an event planner, all you need to do is look out for these qualities in the one you hire.

“From your first meeting with your event planner, you should check if he or she is the listening type and if they pay attention to details.

“If they do not, they cannot coordinate your event successfully,” Badejo says.

3. Checklist Never Too Early

Now forgetfulness is a major issue for hosts.

Imagine a groom's family forgetting their engagement request letter at home or a bride forgetting her bouquet.

Even this writer forgot to buy a pair of socks for his own wedding! The reality dawned while getting set for church.

Its never too early to have a checklist of all the things you need, and I advise you not to categorize some areas as being too private to get help.

Again, some experts have these checklists ready, and hardly would anything be missing on it and they can help you with that.

“Things like event schedule, celebrant’s itinerary, parents’, associates’...etc, even details as little as when a celebrant is expected to sleep the day before the event are important,” she said.

4. Prevent Family Hijack

Prevent family members from hijacking your event.

Now this is very important when you’re planning a wedding because relatives usually have a sense of entitlement. You know how those aunties can be.

They want to determine who eats first at a party, control everybody and show off their influence.

Many times, they mean well, but you need to let them know there is someone in charge and the person has your trust and backing.

Yes, there are times you feel it’s safer with relatives since they are the ones who know everybody.

You can introduce a relative or two to the event planner in case there are family members or friends you would want to treat specially.

You’re already scared of the possibility of the ridicule from big aunties and cousins in case your event planner goofs? But hey, if you hire wisely as recommended above, you will be just fine.

O yes, we all need that tough guy to man the drinks but even if he is your uncle, let him work with the person in charge and follow the serving format.

5. Food Security

Recently it was discovered the morning after a big society wedding that unserved meat was up to a whole cow while the caterer served some people with just one meat during the party.

The caterer was just trying to make sure they didn’t run out of meat but that just shows the lack of proper communication between the caterer and the event planner which sometimes is the host.

You are probably more used to stories of insufficiency but this story of excess (or waste?) is not new to Mrs Badejo.

“For hosts who can't afford to pay a professional to plan the entire event, they can plan the event themselves and hire an event manager to coordinate the event

“It's their responsibility to make sure every guest eats. Host, planner, and caterer would have had an agreement before the event on how the food should be served. Are you giving guests one meat each or not?

“On the day of event, the event planner will check all the food the caterer would dispense. Even plates and cutleries will be counted to ensure the caterer serves the expected number of guests,” she said.

“For drinks, I have male event coordinators who work with me. They manage the drinks and coordinate the service boys,” she said.

healthy food to try at Christmas and New Year

6. Beware! Alcohol Can Mess You Up

Many parties fail because of alcohol abuse. How do we manage this, especially young people?

You may have witnessed some classy birthdays, well organized bachelors’ parties or bridal showers ruined, thanks to drunk guests messing things up.

You may need to consider careful management or monitoring of alcohol serving. For example, you can stop serving a guest who looks like he’s had enough.

Yes, same guest can complain if you stop serving. So, another approach is to ensure servers take some calculated intervals before every new alcohol serving.

It seems difficult, but it helps to reduce quick intoxication and trained servers should not have a problem with that.

However, if all these techniques fail, this is one of the reasons why bouncers or security operatives are hired.

Drunk guests are stylishly taken out by them and the good thing is that they do not have to be in uniform in order not to make your guests uncomfortable.

Sometimes it is tipsy celebrants that spoil their own day. Well, if you cannot be moderate or stay sober on your own day, then you do not need this article, you need a mental health expert.

7. Post Event Report

Lastly, she recommends that a host should request for a post event report from the planner. This helps to plan for future events.

A host can also get feedback from one or two of the guests. If it turns out negative, take it well and use it in future.

Start making those calls now to know how you did at your last event.