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Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid When Choosing an Event Planner

Short Summary

Planning a successful event takes extensive expertise and experience. From selecting a suitable venue to delivering an engaging attendee experience, there are countless dynamic scenes involved. 

However, many event organisers or customers unknowingly make common mistakes during the event planner selection process that can jeopardise their hard work and expectations. 

In this blog, we will discuss the top 10 mistakes event organisers make when choosing a planner.

Challenges of an Event Organiser

Choosing the right event planner is critical to the success of any event. A good event planner can take your event to the next level and deliver an amazing experience for attendees. However, making some common mistakes during the selection process can jeopardise your event. 

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Top 10 event planning mistakes to avoid while choosing an event planner

1. Not prioritising the experience of Attendees

The primary goal of any event is to deliver a great experience for attendees. However, many event organisers miss this important point and focus more on superficial elements like decorations. 

Your event planner must understand that attendees' experience should be the top priority. They should come up with creative ideas to engage attendees at different touchpoints like registration, food, activities, etc. Ask potential planners how they will ensure attendees have a memorable experience.   

2. Lack of Team Strength

Planning a successful event requires expertise in different areas like logistics, catering, decor, technology, etc. It is unlikely that a single person will have proficiency in all these domains. Look for an event planner with a dedicated team of experienced professionals for different functions. 

This will ensure no gaps or last-minute hiccups. Inquire about the specialised skillsets of team members and their past experiences handling similar projects.

3. Lack of event planning and organising methods

Proper planning and organisation are key to the smooth execution of any event. However, some planners may lack standardised processes and methods. They may rely only on individual experience rather than tried-and-tested systems. 

Find out if the planner has documented standard operating procedures and checklists for different stages. Ask them to share a sample project plan. The lack of such systems can compromise quality.

4. Poor venue selection

Choosing the right venue sets the tone for your event. Yet, many planners do not do thorough research on venue options. This can lead to issues like inadequate space, poor facilities or mismatch with your brand. 

Reputable planners will do in-person venue assessments and present proactive solutions. They must understand your requirements around capacity, amenities, location, etc.

5. Improper registration process  

Glitches during registration, like long queues or technical issues, can seriously hamper the attendee experience. Reliable planners will design a seamless registration process, whether online or on-site. 

They must have expertise in handling different registration scenarios. Find out how attendee data will be collected and what the check-in process will involve. Their past experience with similar-sized events should give you confidence.

6. Not having a good relationship with Vendors

Top suppliers and vendors are critical allies for event planners. Established planners will have a long-term rapport with preferred partners who can meet expectations. However, some may rely on one-time deals without verified track records. 

Reputable planners will introduce you to their reliable network of vendors and ensure quality and on-time deliverables.

7. Lack of Catering Choices  

Food is a major decision that can enhance or disappoint attendees. While budget is a factor, limited catering options show the planner's lack of market knowledge and sourcing skills. Find out how many caterers they routinely work with and get details on their menu selection process. 

You want planners with proven expertise in sourcing the best food options as per your budget, cuisine preferences and attendee count.

8. Poor budget management - overspending

Going over budget can ruin your event. Yet, some planners may lack budgeting discipline. They should clearly outline projected costs with a buffer for unseen expenses. Ask for past project cost reports and references who can vouch for their fiscal prudence. 

Compare estimates from multiple planners and check what's included in their management fees. Working with planners who have systems to stick to estimated budgets will give you financial assurance.

9. Lack of Backup plans  

Unforeseen situations like weather, vendor delays or last-minute cancellations are inevitable. But lack of contingency planning can spell disaster. Find out how the planners will mitigate risks with documented backup protocols. 

They must be able to think on their feet and devise quick solutions. Ask them how they've successfully overcome unexpected challenges in past events. 

10. Not Understanding the Client’s Expectations

More than technical skills, planners must have great communication and be tuned into their priorities. Ask potential planners probing questions to gauge their comprehension of your event vision. 

Do they ask the right questions to clarify goals? Reputed planners will get into detailed discussions and present well-thought-out.

Choosing the best event management company in Oman - Dentsu M21

As a leading event management company, Dentsu M21 prides itself on being your reliable ally in envisioning exceptional experiences for attendees and delivering projects on budget. With an experienced planner like Dentsu M21 by your side, you can stay stress-free, knowing your event is in capable hands. 

Our success in handling diverse events internationally means we can foresee challenges and mitigate risks. Choosing a client-focused planner with proven achievements like Dentsu M21 increases your chance of achieving set goals. 

Why to choose the right event planner?

Choosing the right event planner is crucial for the success of any event, big or small. A qualified planner will take the stress off your shoulders and ensure your guests have an exceptional experience. In this blog we have learnt the significance of choosing the right event planner and mistakes to avoid while choosing the right event organisers .

By asking the right questions upfront, you can select a planner who truly understands your vision and will help make it a reality. Choosing correctly is an investment that will significantly increase your chances of achieving your desired outcomes.


1. How do I ensure the event planner prioritises the attendee experience?  

When shortlisting planners, ask them specific questions about how they will engage attendees at different touchpoints and make it a memorable experience. A good planner will have innovative ideas and focus on the attendee's journey holistically rather than superficial aspects.

2. What should I look for in an event planning team?

The ideal planning team would have specialised skills and experienced members to handle different functions like logistics, catering, decoration, etc. This ensures smooth operations without gaps. Inquire about the team's expertise, past projects and processes to assess their strengths. 

3. How can I confirm the planner's planning methodology? 

Reliable planners will have standardised operating procedures and documentation for different stages. Ask them to share a sample project plan, timeline and risk mitigation strategies. Their answers will help evaluate if they adopt robust systems or rely only on individual experience.

4. How do I check the planner's vendor network?

Reputable planners will introduce their preferred partners with proven track records who can meet expectations. Talk to some of their past clients to understand their reliability. A good network is important for quality deliverables and handling unforeseen situations.

5. How can the budget be effectively managed?

Ask for past project cost reports and references. Compare estimates from multiple planners and understand what's included in their management fees. Planners with budgeting systems and the discipline to stick to estimates offer financial assurance for your event.