5 Phases of Event Management for Success | Event Management Philippines

Friday, September 16, 2016

So you want to create a successful event?

It is easy to say, but to ensure that your event is a success may take us one to two whole days to discuss it. At the same time, if you are now putting it into action or implementing the event to reality, you will discover that you will give a lot of blood, sweat and luck in order to reach the success you are dreaming to achieve.

But no worries, one of the ways to ensure that you are halfway to your dream success is to know the five phases of event management.


So you are face-to-face with your clients, you signed your event management contract, congratulations! Savor the moment of victory because often times this may be the last time you will be smiling alongside with your clients.

I am not kidding. I have heard, know and see a lot of good beginnings between client and event manager turned to ugly endings.

But of course, you can avoid it.

Research is the phase where you have to discover the overt objectives of the clients and, most importantly, covert objectives.

Clients often go beyond the RFPs (Request for Proposals) or scope of work. The client always infuses their personal desires, albeit you have to uncover it.

This is the reason that in this phase you have to ask the clients a lot of Why? Uncover their vision beyond the papers that was given to you.

Lastly, determine the practicality of the client’s objectives, desires and vision.


In this phase, you are now asking the clients the theme of the events. You are now mindstorming with clients on possible concepts and flow of the event.

A caveat on this phase, do not lose sight of the objectives that needed to be achieved while designing the event.

The bells and whistles that may sprung during the mindstorming can overwhelm you that you may be carried by the waves of colors of these concepts, taking you away from the very reason why the event exists that is to achieve important objectives.


In this phase, the budget, venue and timelines should now be finalized.

If the research and design phase are conducted well, there will be no or minor glitches will be encountered in this phase.

I recommend using the ICOM Model in this phase. ICOM stands for Input, Constraints, Output and Methods. Using this framework we can see the different angles of the plan and how the actual event will start and end (I recently wrote an article about the ICOM Model).

Planning is important, but the planning process will give you the edge in making your event a success.


The plan is organic, meaning some details can change because of unforeseen situations and developments. On the other hand, the planning process is an exercise that allows you to study carefully and meticulously all the details of the event.

As the saying goes, God is in the details – the planning process is the best exercise to be detailed driven.


This is the phase where the logistics, manpower and other supplier requirements are finalized and most of the work needed for pre-event are completed.

I use the 3 Cs (Communication, Cooperation and, of course, Coordination) to amplify this phase in my organization.

My adrenaline in this phase is high. Adjustments require creative and fast thinking and decision-making – traits that I acquired and are very fond of because it is a full display of how competent the event manager is.

I call myself the conductor during this phase, as I lead the choir to produce a masterpiece performance that will surely ensure a happy smile on the face of my clients.


Surveys and post event assessments are part of this phase. In the ICOM Model it is the comparison between the Input and Output. Taking into account the gaps between the input and output.

In simpler terms, it is like getting a checklist of objectives and expectations that your clients agreed to achieve before the event and ticking each item on the checklist if you have achieved it, and explaining the reasons why you failed to fulfill the items agreed on the checklists.

My advice on the items you failed to fulfill, be honest and explain the reasons why you failed to achieve it.

On this particular matter, I hope that your reasons for failing to achieve it is valid, if not, be prepared to lose the client or worse, be prepared not to get paid and lose a lot of money as a consequence.

So now that you know the five phases of event management, I hope that you will become confident in navigating your events against the different challenges that you will encounter, and in the end, deliver the event that you are expected to manage to where it deserves to be – in the Pantheon of Success.

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