Free Idea Fridays!

The Life of the Party
Let me begin by saying that anyone who knows me can attest to the fact that I do drink. I’m Italian, so of course I had my first sip of wine at the age of 4. My brothers are big wigs in the beer industry (love my Krombacher) and I can personally account for a rise in sales of Hendrick's Gin.
One can easily say that I love to drink, but I love my job even more, and the two just don’t mix. My job revolves around “the party”, but I should never be “the life of the party”.
As event professionals, our job is to produce the party, not partake in the party. We have a long list of responsibilities, which include: to our team, our suppliers, the venue, our clients, and their guests.
I need to stay clear, focussed and diligent. And let’s not forget, I need to get up really early the next morning and do it all over again.
So, let’s talk about the Mad-Men era of liquid lunches that changed drastically in the 90’s. This was when mixing business with entertainment became a no longer acceptable expense for income tax purposes by the government. I remember the former owner of a renowned restaurant here in Toronto recounting stories of business tycoons and government officials spending long lunch hours ordering very expensive wines. Believe it or not, this all changed practically overnight as a result of the regulation change, and a move to a much more conservative attitude towards drinking and business. Today, the Disrupters Era is seeing a gradual acceptance to “entertainment at work”, with beer fridges and ping pong tables becoming more common place in many communal work spaces.
So where does the Event Industry fit in all this?
In my early days in special events, my love of drinking flaunted that I was “one of the boys” which made networking in a male-dominated industry much easier. When I became a business owner, my attitudes matured because I want to be remembered as a professional who is always appropriate and contributing. I wanted to lead my team and set an example. For my business, drinking on the job wasn’t a winning strategy.
Our industry is bravely built by the hard work of so many small businesses. Unfortunately, many of these small businesses don’t have HR departments to deal with drinking policies and regulating disciplinary action for drinking on the job. Here we are again back to a reoccurring theme in my blogs this year – self regulation.
Drinking before, during, or after an event won’t let you keep your job for very long, especially if you have to be on the job and on your toes the next day.
Event Professionals (planners, venue managers, decorators, florists, entertainers and yes even those audio-visual techs) everywhere take note: If the next event you produce starts feeling like your own private party, with a drink in hand, it may be time to consider a change in career.
Blog post by: Dana Zita

at 11:44AM