Are you looking for the perfect local venue for your client’s next event but stuck on that je ne sais quoi that seems to be missing? It could very well just be right under your client’s nose, literally: their very own office space! If the foundation is there for your capacity and format needs than why not treat it as an event space!
We recently transformed a client’s office space into a dreamy event space, and we highly recommend it.
- It’s a nice gesture that is much more personable; your customers will get to know you better by understanding the space you work in (just like inviting a guest into your home).
- Your guests get to meet more influential people. Everyone is right there. Your CEO, strategic directors, managers and sales reps – there’s no struggle in getting people out to the venue when the commute is steps away from their desk.
- Designing your event space can be more flexible, and it will totally be “on brand”. A bonus if your client already has a gorgeous office to show off.
- Cost savings (every marketer’s favourite win!). No venue rental costs and other potential budget nuisances: landmark fees, union fees, gratuity, etc.
Things to Keep in Mind:
Don’t be intrusive. No schlepping boxes after boxes, in front of employees trying to take calls at their desk. Be a magician. Employees should be blown away by how and when you were able to transform their event space without them knowing.
- Brief the facility operations team at the office, make an effort to brief them on what the event is (they will be your BFF helping you maneuver through the office) and get their approval on everything and everyone who will be involved.
- Avoid the 9-5 set-up time (or just do quieter set-up actions during this time). Early mornings and aftework hours (aka normal event planner hours) should be considered for set-up.
- Book the loading dock on a timely schedule for your suppliers. This needs approval too. Especially Downtown Toronto, no one will be happy when a supplier shows up unannounced to a loading dock in a corporate office building.
- Storage space is crucial if you plan to move things out of the office space, or have supplies that need to be stored. This will 100% affect your event space design.
- Communication is key, no one wants to be in the dark, or look unorganized in front of customers. Send out necessary company-wide e-mails about interrupted service (i.e. unavailable boardrooms, changes to in-house catering services, furniture that will be removed, etc.)
- Be extremely friendly and patient with the front desk staff. They should be well informed of your event logistics as the first impression to every supplier and guest that comes through. Bring in reinforcements (temp staff) to support them if they are going to be flooded with an extra 100 visitors the day of your event.
- Measure out your event space, consider the capacity and event flow – just like any other venue, make sure you create a detailed floorplan.
Don’t forget to get creative! Elevate the office space, by showcasing visual and experiential investment into welcoming customers into your space. It’s still an event after all, so give some love to your event space design and event flow.