You’re having a corporate event – a party, dinner, or a social gathering for internal staff. The question is: where do you hold it? There are a lot of venues open to a corporate client, but they’re not all created equal. Businesses love to charge other businesses premium prices, but that doesn’t guarantee stellar results. What does guarantee stellar results is customer service, atmosphere, and matching the venue to the purpose.
Nightclubs and Bars
Most companies don’t pick nightclubs as their first venue for corporate entertainment. It seems a little out-of-bounds to go there for an “official” event. But, nightclubs don’t have to be a sleazy excuse for a meeting room. Rent out the entire club for a night (preferably on a night when business is usually low for the club).
It’s an interesting place to hold orientation or a casual dinner party. You can have your event catered. Because this is a very casual venue, make sure that your event is appropriate. For example, you wouldn’t want to hold an important, formal, ceremony in a place like this. This is a place to party.
Maybe, all of the teams in your company hit their benchmarks. This is a great way to celebrate. Or, maybe you’re introducing a new product line or celebrating 10 years in business. These are all “celebration” themes, and a perfect fit for a classy nightclub. It’s unconventional, but no one will accuse you of being unoriginal or boring.
Bowling or Go-Kart Racing
Bowling or Go-Kart racing is another great way to bond with employees while having fun. Friendships are forged during activities that are traditionally “non-business.” Go-kart racing gets back to our primal roots to go fast and do some damage. Well, OK, you probably won’t get hurt out there on the track, but there is the association there of go-karting being dangerous and yet fun. Peddle to the metal, and take no prisoners out there on the track.
If you’re not into racing, try bowling. Swinging a bowling ball around isn’t nearly the adrenaline rush that racing is, but it also gives you time to talk with the people you’re with.
It’s going to be a casual event, but that’s OK. This is where really cool business ideas are often born – when everyone is relaxed and having a good time. Plus, it’s fun to run a successful business from a bowling alley, coming up with a new million-dollar idea.
This venue can be an awesome place to take employees that you want to reward for stellar performance at the office. It’s also a great place to have orientation meetings that are focused on getting all employees interacting with one another.
This is more of a traditional venue for businesses. You can rent out a section of a fancy or casual restaurant and hold corporate meetings here. Most decently-sized, and large chain, restaurants can accommodate large corporate functions.
Expect to pay a premium for the fancier places but, unless you’re new to corporate functions, this is not something that should surprise you.
Banquet halls are reserved for the most formal events being held by your company. Let’s say you are holding an awards ceremony. You want some place special that will allow you to hold your function uninterrupted by other people. This is where you hold it.
Banquet halls are built for this kind of thing. Most large hotels, and sometimes private companies catering solely to the business event market, rent out banquet halls for dinners, day-long meetings and even weekend events.
If you need a place for a large conference, try looking into large resorts that offer multiple conference room rentals. That way, you can set up 5, 7, or 10 rooms (or as many as you need) for your corporate function. Most venues like this section off entire sections of the resort of building so that you’ll be uninterrupted for the duration of your event.
Want to embarrass yourself and all of your upper-level management? Rent out a karaoke bar or a private room. Most karaoke places allow you to order food while you sing – OK, so it’s bar-type food and it’s usually not the highest-quality you can buy, but what do you want? After a few beers, no one will care what the food tastes like anyway.
This venue is perfect for team building and “get to know you”-type events. You don’t even have to restrict it to upper management. Rank-and-file employees can mingle with the execs. It’s something that’s taboo in the corporate world, but you’re not that stiff, emotionless, corporation, are you?
In deciding the corporate event location, please bear in mind that it should best-fit the event. You don’t want to hold a formal, serious meeting at a bowling alley, do you?
So, how about you? What is your favorite place for a corporate event?
About the Author: Arron Hunter is an event planner who always has an eye for a space’s potential. He especially enjoys blogging about creative and practical ways to pull off events to remember.