Every event has it’s pros and cons and as a meeting planner, event manager or marketer that runs events you know that the days can be long and challenging. They can also be engaging and energizing. Which way an event feels to you at the end of the day is all about the choices you make, the mental approach you have, and your preparation for the event.
One of the first things you can do to set yourself up for success at your event is to prepare your event survival kit. If you haven’t done this before, it’s a critical part of the preparation that really helps most seasoned event professionals as they head into their “busy” season. Back when I ran a ton of events myself, I carried a lot of my survival kit items in a fanny pack-yep it was the 1990s and early 2000s and fanny packs were cool back then (they are kind of making a small come back now)- and it always included: allergy pills, Advil, heating packets if it was winter, ice packs if it was summer, Bandaids, Lifesavers- wintergreen only, and a diet coke or red bull. I usually also had notecards, a few pens, and a pager or hand radio.
To make sure you’re considering your options when creating your own event survival kit, I asked a few of our meeting planners what was in their survival kits today. They shared lists and each person had some items specific to their role at an event.
To give you some perspective on what’s unique in each kit, and who keeps it with them, the lists are below so that you can create a BYO event survival kit.
Nicole Kleman is a Strategic Account Executive at Meeting Tomorrow. Drawing from over a decade of extensive experience in politics, non-profits, and hotels, Nicole thrives on helping shape visions into reality.
Nicole’s survival kit:
- 5 Hour Energy
- Bandaids / first aid kit
- Hand sanitizer
- Aspirin/pain reliever
- Breath mints
- USB drive (at least a 16gb 3.0 USB drive)
- Tide Pen
- Portable charger
- Screen cleaning cloth
Kelly Greene is a Meeting Tomorrow Event Producer. With over a decade of vendor and production experience, she has a sharp eye for logistics and content. Kelly loves live events and ensuring all things align with the main objective.
Kelly’s survival kit:
- Medium size binder clips (they make great impromptu drape clips)
- Measuring tape (if there’s a cheap-ish digital one that also serves as a level, that’s even better)
- Spike tape (two colors, preferably)
- Glow tape
- Translucent, white shower curtain (for LED bar light diffusion)
- iPhone and android charging cables
- Small screw-drivers (philips and flathead)
- Glasses and/or screen wipes
- High-power/ long-range USB presentation remote
Sholeh Munion is a Meeting Tomorrow Event Manager. As a CMP with over 12 years experience handling a broad scope of events, Sholeh loves creating impactful experiences and is willing to do whatever it takes to deliver success.
Sholeh’s survival kit:
- A power strip (with a long-ish power cable attached – at least 3’)
- Extra pens, highlighters, and sharpies
- Small stapler and safety pins
- Small sewing kit
- Kind bar
- Tape (scotch, packing & painter’s tape)
- Box cutter (only if I am checking a bag)
- Small scissors and tweezers (goes with first aid kit)
- Benadryl for allergic reactions!
- Acrylic tabletop sign holder (8.5×11)
- Hair ties
As you can see, everyone takes a slightly different approach and sees “survival kits” from their own unique experience. These three event professionals at Meeting Tomorrow all have a slightly different take on what they really need to be set up for success at an event they are running and you should as well.
Hopefully these examples help you to create your own kit, or add to your existing one, with tools to keep your energy up, your body in motion, and your mind sharp. And when you have your new, or improved, event survival kit ready for your next event, I also hope that it sets you up to feel more engaged and energized throughout your whole event and sets you up for success (and survival).
About the author: Monique Mahler is the VP of Marketing at Meeting Tomorrow. She loves traveling, horses, and puppies of all shapes and sizes, and marketing as a practice (especially at events).