The Best On Site Event Tools You’ll Ever Pack

Heading on site for an event is a stressful time. Taking care of last minute changes, juggling final details while packing everything to get out the door. So much on your mind.

What is your frame of mind when you arrive on-site?

Ever experienced an event manager arriving on site in “attack mode”?

You know what I’m talking about. The one that shows up on site radiating stress and practically looking past everyone as they hunt for the first sign of a problem? It’s like they “expect” something to go wrong and they are ready to do battle.

From the moment they arrive, their whole demeanor sets others on edge.

Chances are the “others” are staff and suppliers.

I’ve even seen the two-headed event manager. One that is smiling and happy and chatty with clients…and rude and impatient with those they work with.

Such a shame.

Cause here’s the thing. There is absolutely zero chance that they will get the best out of others when approaching them in that state of mind.

And if there is EVER a time when you need to get the best out of all those working with you to make the event a success…it’s on site.

While you may not be that extreme in your actions or demeanor…

Do you ever arrive on site so occupied with your “to do” list that you forget to engage those working with you?

If you are the one leading the set-up and ultimately managing the event, it’s up to you to set the right tone and to get folks off to a great start!

The next time you are packing up for an event, here are a few important tools to remember that will help bring out the best in those that work with and for you. They will ultimately help you too!

Positive outlook

Arrive on site believing that everything will go well…and chances are that’s exactly what will happen.

Think of the positive outcome you are aiming for at the end of the event and make that your focus. Imagine everything turning out beautifully and the event finishing with great success. Others will feel your positivity and optimism and it will energize them.


So very simple but so many forget. Arrive on site with a smile and you set the tone for the entire set-up and event.

A smile exudes confidence, brings out the best in others…and makes you feel good too!

A smile immediately puts others at ease and draws them to you. And isn’t that what you want on site? Collaboration and cooperation from everyone?


There is a little (or sometimes a lot) of impatience in all of us who make a career in events. It’s pretty natural in an industry where so much is riding on timeliness.

However…impatience at the wrong time and directed at the wrong person does not work in your favour at all!

On site is definitely one time to exercise as much patience at possible particularly when it comes to volunteers, temporary staff, visitors/guests and clients. For some this may be a new experience.

This doesn’t mean you change expectations or timelines or desired outcomes. It’s more about treading lightly and kindly. This will make it a better experience for all concerned…including you.

And keep in mind…there is bound to be something happens that is out of your control. Approaching challenges with a patient and calm demeanor often leads to a better outcome.

Buckets full of appreciation

Thank everyone for everything.

You have no idea how far this will go or how much better it will make you and others feel until you try. After all…you aren’t doing this alone are you? It takes a whole host of suppliers and staff and volunteers to pull off most events…so treat everyone who is in it with you as if they are the reason this is all happening…because that, in part at least, is the truth.

A sense of humour

Often times in stressful situations we tend to think that there is no place for humour. In fact it’s one of the very best places for it!

Hang on tight to your ability to laugh at a situation or problem…or yourself. You’ll find it will not only relax you but those around you. And in that positive state, you all are much more likely to see your way clear to a solution.

Also, most people instinctively want to help. And even more so when it’s someone likeable and who doesn’t take every moment too seriously.

“A sense of humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done. – Dwight D. Eisenhower


Of course there is nothing quite like being really organized and prepared when you head on site to ensure you feel relaxed and confident that things will run smoothly.

That, the best technology and a great tool kit of course.

Make sure your kit includes the actions and demeanors that will bring out the best in all those who will help ensure your success.

A positive outlook, a smile, patience, a sense of humour and loads of appreciation don’t take up any space or require special packing.

But they can be the very best tools you’ll ever use!


Post by Margaret Johnston,

As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.


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