Event Manager’s guide to surviving Christmas

Staff with champagne flutesThe run up to Christmas is a notoriously hectic time for any event professional. Early starts, late finishes and hours on their feet can often result in event managers reaching Christmas tired, sick and needing to hide under their duvet! At IoOE we know only too well the feeling of wondering how we will make it through another Christmas season still smiling.

With years of Christmas party planning under my belt I have drawn up my very own survival guide…use these top tips and I promise you will make it out alive 😉

Being prepared is key. Make sure all your paper work is in place and you have folders for every event you are organising containing all the necessary information for you and your team. Christmas is definitely not the time to leave things to chance. Being meticulous in the planning across all departments will ensure that things run smoothly on the day.
Nothing prepares you better for this time of year than being in good health beforehand. Make sure you eat well, lower your alcohol intake, exercise & sleep well in the weeks before the busy period. Do what you can to boost your immune system (I swear by taking Echinacea and having a flu jab once a year).


If you have ever worn a pedometer on event days you will know how quickly the miles on your feet can clock up and the impact this can have on your body.

Comfy shoes are a must for everyone on events (male and female). I always advise wearing practical clothes, that you don’t mind getting grubby, for event set up, with your suit/event attire to change into later so you look and feel fresh in front of your clients and their guests when the event starts.

Be prepared for the varying temperatures of an event venue too…wear layers and carry a jumper for those chilly late night load-outs in December!

We are all guilty of not sitting down anywhere near enough when we are on a busy event, so when the opportunity arises…TAKE IT! (Even if it is for a few moments – your feet will thank you!). Make sure you and the team have a private area where you can all grab a break. It is great to have somewhere you can freshen up or rest away from your client and guests.
With the adrenaline of the event it can be super easy to forget to eat regularly. Event days are the only time I have been known to go a whole day without even thinking about food! If you are guilty of this too make sure you save something for later and eat during a quieter time or perhaps even at the end of the event.
Water, water and more water should be your essential fuel as it is incredibly easy to become dehydrated!
Give Thanks
Nothing boosts morale (your own and your teams) like saying thank you. I always ensure that at the end of an event I thank all of those involved for their hard work – front of house, kitchen, porters, supplier and the venue team. Be sure to also thank your client for asking you to be involved in organising their event.
And keep smiling…
Once it is all over stick on your onesie and head for the sofa with a box of Quality Street for company.
Happy Christmas One And All xxx

Gemma Banks

Creative Director