The Big Three Challenges


The most common struggle for event organisers is budget. And invariably this is too tight for you to bring to life the event that you really desire in your mind.

According to C & IT Magazine:

“35% of corporates say their biggest internal barrier to holding events is budget”

It’s something we see more and more as austerity becomes the trend and budgets get squeezed from all directions. Put simply, clients just do not have the budgets they once had!

So, how can we get around this?

The answer is that ultimately, each aspect of the event needs to be categorised into the following:

Need to have

Nice to have

Not really necessary

Remember, that running an event is always about the goals – what do you want the outcome to be? What do you want your delegates to see, understand and—critically—do as a result of attending your event?

So, as you’re categorising the aspects of your event, run them through the filter of your goals, and figure out which are necessary to those outcomes.

Then get creative…

Some of the best ideas come when we’re in a corner; and the creative exercise of putting together a top-class programme with a limited budget can be great fun!

And there are definitely advantages in enlisting the help of an event agency here (if your budget isn’t too tight).

A good event agency knows how to add lots of value without significant  cost.  And they have long standing relationships with suppliers which means they can often negotiate better rates on your behalf.


Time, or more precisely, short turnaround times are another challenge we all face when organising events.

Have you been asked to organise an event that is to take place in 4 weeks’ time for 200 people, based somewhere specific?

If you have, you’ll know exactly what it’s like. (And if not, just pause for a moment and be grateful!)

The pressure of being given this kind of tight deadline really does test an event organiser’s skills and sanity – whether for a big or small event.

The greatest challenge is the reduced options. Venues book up in advance, and the best ones will, naturally, be taken early.

This can leave you mopping up the venues that are less popular for one reason or another. (Point to note: if the unpopularity is for a reason that doesn’t matter to your outcomes, you’ve hit on a winner – and you may be able to negotiate a great last-minute deal!)

Marketing the event will also be a challenge. Budgets have already been allocated and people have already filled their diaries, so you may struggle to get support from sponsors and get enough bums on seats.

But it’s not all doom and gloom!

It is, indeed, possible to pull off a last minute event with focus and dedication. And the real saving grace is that you’ll only be pulling your hair out for a short time!

The pressure of a tight deadline can work wonders on your motivation, and you’ll often pull a real miracle from the hat.

On balance, though, I’d recommend getting things started as early as possible when you can. It’s just less stress and hassle, and you’ll sleep easier at night!


Nothing puts the brakes on creativity like hearing the phrase “We’ve always done it this way” or, arguably worse, “The CEO likes it done this way”.

And it comes down, basically, to a fear of change. We humans know what we like, and like what we know. We feel safe with the familiar, and often fear mixing things up because we worry about what will happen if it all goes wrong.

The problem is that when you run the same event year in, year out, it is less than exciting for your delegates. And un-excited delegates leads to un-engaged delegates. And that leads to your core message (and desired outcomes of the event) being missed.

So what’s the solution?

Firstly, to gently ask those who are resisting to consider opening their minds, and at least listen to some new ideas.

And if this is done at the proposal stage, they’re not even having to commit to any changes right now, just to discover how they might go ahead.

And this is also where using an experienced event company can pay off massively.

You see, a good events company has run many events for many clients. We, here at SJ Events, have run well over 500, for example. And that means only one thing…

We’ve “done it all” and we know what works well, and what might not.

Even if an activity, or event format is new to your CEO, there’s a good chance we’ve done something similar for someone else and we can talk through all the benefits and, indeed, challenges involved.

There’s no reason to go into a new idea blind, when you can draw on our cumulative sixty-four years of event experience.

If you're thinking about organising an event and want to discuss how our services can help you, give us a call on 0116 230 2040.

We are here 9am - 5:30pm Monday to Friday.