As an event planner, you would agree that creativity is the only thing that can differentiate you from your competitors. That’s why we wrote this article “Ten Ways to Keep Your Creativity Flowing as an Event Planner.”
Every professional event planner has a bit of creativity in her. It’s not possible to handle all the pressure that comes with event planning without having a good amount of creativity deposited in you. You’d need creativity to plan the event, draw the movement, spacing, catering, experience and rentals.
However, it’s not easy having your job dependent on your creativity. Just like every writer, musician or painter, an event planner has to consistently creative to survive the competition that is in the events planning industry. Any day you stop innovating, that’s the day your career as an events planner starts depreciating.
We have outlined 10 steps you can take as an event planner to keep your creativity flowing as an event planner. These steps are tested, trusted and are gotten from professionals who have vast experience in event planning and psychology.
Here they are:
1. Give Yourself A Break
There is nothing as important as rest. Giving yourself a break does not just revitalize you, it helps unlock your brain to more ideas that you would have ignored before.
As a professional event planner, you might not have enough time to stay off for months. However, you can squeeze out 20 minutes during your working hours, or a single day of the week to stay off work and rest your brain.
Most times, we lack the needed ideas for our projects not because we are not creative, but because our system of creativity has been left to run for too long. Always insert breaks and rests into your schedule, as it would not just help you become more creative, but would help ensure you don’t break down due to stress.
2. Divert Things From Their Intended Use
Diverting things from their intended use might seem normal, but trust me it takes a lot of conscious effort and boldness to do this.
Imagine using a candlebra to decorate the stage and not the tables. Any experienced event planner would not just laugh at you, but would insult you. But unless you’re organizing an event for event planners, you need not bother about this. Diverting objects from their intended use does not just make your event more stunning, it helps you think out of the box.
During our interview with Mario Muller, he dropped the following statement
Why not use a fork to stir your coffee, if it is the closest thing? Reinvent the usage of things. If you want to practice strategically, take a random object and find 25 things to use it for. If you find something that can not be done with it, how would you need to change it so it would do the job?
This does not just enable you to become unique, it also boosts your creativity. It enables you to leave no stones upturned when designing event plans or themes.
3. Stay Playful
Staying playful doesn’t mean taking things for granted. According to German Coach Mario Muller, it means “play by the rules you choose. Change them the way you like.”
Human beings are lovers of routine, and plenty a time an event planner is tempted to follow the normal boring routines which his teachers or even his employers have laid forth. But for creativity purposes, there should be an allowance for playing around.
Play around with several themes, ideas and strategies. Forget your worries and play with the ideas you have. Don’t try to sieve the ideas as they come, just play with them till you fall in love with it.
4. Develop A Creative Habit
You have to create a routine that aids your creativity. Creativity is like a tree, you have to prune it and water it so it can keep on producing more.
Form a habit of jotting down theme ideas the moment they come to your consciousness. Probably make it a habit to write new ideas or draw new event themes twice a week or even everyday, depending on how busy your schedule is.
There’s a blog post on Hubilo that explains this further. Feel free to check it out.
5. Work With Others
Don’t be a mincer. Don’t hoard your ideas. Feel free to relate to your colleagues, employees and others your various ideas. Ideas are like dreams, only the person who has it can fully grasp it. You can hoard your projects, but you can share ideas.
Furthermore, avoid the temptation of screening other people’s ideas at the first instance. This limits the chance of getting that extra boost of creativity from others. Just jot down the ideas and look for ways to make it better. Don’t listen to someone’s ideas because you want to poke holes in it. Listen to ideas because you feel you have what it takes to make it better
6. Early to Rise
Studies have shown that rising on time to start designing and writing is one of the most effective ways to remain creative. By waking up early and penning down event ideas is one of the best means of progressing as an event planner.
In the early morning, your energy is at it’s peak and your brain is fresh from sleep. You have what it takes to design and plan event themes beforehand. Try planning events early in the morning, before you even do any other thing.
Personally, I design event themes early in the morning. This helps me work on the other parts which include hiring vendors, scheduling and negotiations.
7. Try Stress
Try doing mundane and stressful tasks. Don’t just sit down in your comfort zone and try to think. A popular adage says “necessity is the mother of invention.”
Steven Kotler, author, journalist and Director of Research for the Flow Genome Project, recommends writing bizarre emails.
“Instead of writing a first sentence of the ‘Last month, we hit our quarterly numbers’ variety, start with something peculiar: ‘Last month, employees found a baby elephant in the lunchroom.”
Stressing yourself brings out the creative part of you. Engage on boring or routine tasks that are totally unrelated and too irritating to you. It would give you the motivation to embark on the more important ones.
8. Take A Walk
When drawing an event plan or designing an event theme, you can always take a walk. This doesn’t just clear your mind or help you ease off the stress of thinking out a solution, it also helps you exercise and get fit for work.
By taking a walk in between brainstorming sessions, you would be able to refresh your brain and get yourself set to generate more creative ideas.
I recall a particular case when I was planning an campus reunion party. This party was to be attended by senators and governors who were alumni of a prominent Nigerian school. In between the planning, a lot of things started going wrong. Vendors pulling out, workers misbehaving and pressure from the planning committee. I walked off from the venue and stroll around for 30 minutes. I chose not to think about anything related to the job. When I returned, the situation reset itself. That reunion is one of my best events ever.
Research aggressively. Look out for events that look like your client’s desires and style your event after theirs. Ask questions, send questionnaires, do surveys and reach out.
Platforms like Pinterest, Tumblr and even this platform are all good enough platforms for you to get event ideas, plans and thoughts. Trust me, you can’t do this on your own.
Check for trending themes, check for the various ideas the event teams of similar events used, reach out to your fellow event planners and discover what they’re doing. Trust me, it pays.
Most events are designed after other ones. Check out how others did theirs, add more creativity to it and trust me, you’d become a creative event planner.
Exercise helps you keep fit. According to scientists, aerobic exercise can boost your IQ. It’s not always enough for an event planner to try other creative measures.
Try doing more exercises, don’t just be a desk event planner. Work out, burn fat, clear your head and become a more better event planner. Trust me, it always pays.
In summary, remember the Ten Ways to Keep Your Creativity Flowing As An Event Planner
- Give Yourself A Break
- Divert Things from their Intended Use
- Stay Playful
- Develop A Creative Habit
- Work With Others
- Early To Rise
- Try Stress
- Take A Walk
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