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13 tips for onsite survival
As any event professional knows, working onsite can be the most satisfying part of the job. Seeing months of planning come together into an amazing live experience is a fantastic feeling.
But we also know that those days onsite can be challenging. Long hours, stressed-out clients, and constant problem-solving can be exhausting. We asked some of our Project Directors for their top tips for onsite survival, here’s what they said:
- SNACKS! I learnt very early on in this game that the best way to win over the crew and make sure everyone is working to their full potential is having a regular supply of crisps/chocolates/sweets at all times. You can’t be grumpy when someone is feeding you Reese’s Pieces!
- Personal hydration survival pack of lip balm, hydrating face spray, hand cream – it gets very chappy in those fields/hotels/conference centres
- Distinctive re-usable coffee cup as you are guaranteed to forget where you put your brew when you are doing a million things at once… and who can deal with that?
- Pre-production is the key to a successful event! Plenty of pre-planning can lead to smooth delivery, and much less stress on the day. That extends to what you’ll need around you. An onsite crew box is an absolute must. It will include everything from essential stationery, tissues, hair clips, plasters, perfume, and enough chargers for your crew office to keep everyone with laptop and phone battery throughout.
- I like to take the time to introduce myself to all event staff from the venue, security and Brand Ambassadors. You never know when you might be asking for a favour and it’s always easier if you’ve already said hello and been friendly throughout the day.
- One team mentality – Get the entire team together for a briefing that not only informs them of their roles and the deliverables of the live event, but to build morale and ensure that you’re delivering as one team.
- Communication – Keep talking! Use those walkie talkies to communicate what’s going on where, if you need help, if timings are on track. It’s the only way that you can offer reassurance to clients and to keep positivity across the team.
- A team Whatsapp group is a communication lifesaver if the radios go down – have all numbers you require saved on your phone before the event.
- A team minibar! This might sound silly, but the ability to wind down at the end of the day, share a little drink, have a laugh, and chat through any frustrations can do wonders for team morale.
- Comfy shoes are honestly the most important thing for me, comfort must come first… but a pack of Compeed blister plasters is always a good idea. A fitbit is also fun to keep you going knowing that despite not being able to make the gym you have no doubt clocked up 30,000+ steps.
- I like to remember Swan Theory: be a serene, calming presence for your clients and crew on the surface even if you are manically paddling underneath.
- I implement a ban on pre-packaged sandwiches. Nothing says you don’t care about your crew more than a meal deal with egg mayo and a packet of crisps. A good lunch really puts a smile on everyone’s face. Get some good fuel in your belly and you’re ready to go for round 2.
- An event bible also helps in case the team needs to change last minute. It will include the essentials; the excel docs, script plans, callsheet and shot lists all safely tucked in a folder… and guard it with your life!