To-Do Lists: A Nightmare for Some, a “Can’t Live Without” for Event Professionals

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Event planners love to stay organized. With a million things happening at once — we have to! So, don’t judge our organized, nerdy ways. Embrace them.

Achieving a Killer To-Do List

1. Do it first thing. Set your goals for the day when you feel most energized and motivated (that should be in the morning!). If you want to get an even bigger head start, create a list the night before.
2. Be detailed. Add even the most minute detail of a task to your day’s checklist. The more things to cross off a list, the more satisfaction.
3. Add other’s actions. If you’re expecting materials, feedback, or a reply from someone, add that to your to-do list. This way, you know to follow up if you haven’t received it.
4. Include personal tasks. It’s helpful to see both personal and professional checklist items in one place, making it easier to prioritize and manage time.
5. Stay organized. (Duh.) Make sure to create your list in a format that’s easiest for you to navigate (Microsoft Word or Excel), whether it’s by timeline or by task. Everyone works differently, so do what works for you.

Now that’s you’ve finished your own checklist, it might be helpful to create one for your team. When planning events, a team checklist can help increase productivity holding each person accountable for designated tasks.

Team Lists

Planning: Can include a budget, payment schedule, team task list
Production: Create a checklist for day-of and on-site tasks
Post-recap: Keep breakdown and recap tasks in one list to help conclude your event successfully

Different Ways to Create

Some might feel that carrying around a notebook and pen is too old school for such a fast-paced industry. (Since we all live on our phones anyway.) Some still get satisfaction from manually writing and scratching off tasks. It doesn’t matter how a list is created, as long as there is one.

1. Post-It Notes on a white board. Add each task to a white board or wall and remove the post-its when a task is completed.
2. Good old notebook. Keep a separate notebook for your to-do lists. You think crossing off tasks is satisfying? Wait until you finish the last page of a book!
3. Go paperless. When you become even closer to your phone.
4. Writing on your hand. You’re on your own with this one.

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