I’m going to make it a priority that every event I run includes a junior staffer that can answer the door, take coats, pass out nametags, and watch for overall event logistics. These tasks are essential to the proper welcoming of every guest, but it can take a significant period of time at each event. If an event starts at 6 pm, I find guests won’t often arrive until 6:45, right about the time the program is about to begin. After the program is finished, a slow trickle of guests starts to flow out the door. I have always enjoyed greeting guests as they arrive and taking a few minutes to say hello and making sure they feel welcome.
But staying by the door means my conversations can only last so long. As you well know, there are a lot of important conversations and interactions that happen at these kinds of events. Often we will come into an event wanting to have a couple of specific conversations with guests and this is really hard to do if you are coordinating event logistics.
Including a junior staffer provides you a number of additional advantages. This staff member can remind volunteers and individuals participating in the program of any last minute changes. Sometimes there are components of the takeaway packet that this individual can help put together. They can also be great for snapping some photos.
What techniques do you use on the day of the event? Another approach I’ve used if there are a handful of staff at an event is to take turns being assigned to the door or working on a component of event logistics.