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A Practitioner's Guide to Event & Venue Management Session 3


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"A Practitioner's Guide to Event & Venue Management" was a graduate level course taught at the University of San Francisco Sports Management Program (Orange County Campus) in Spring, 2017. The objective of the course was to have students "job ready" if pursuing a career in event management and venue operations. The third session was a discussion regarding venue booking and event scheduling. It included an interesting panel discussion with Tim Ripke (General Manager, Viejas Arena @ SDSU), Joe Rubendall (Sports Sales Manager, San Diego Tourism Authority) and Josh Brown (Events Coordinator, SDCC Stadium).
Cameron Ungar taught and developed the course based off of is background in athletic venue management. Cameron Ungar is President of Stylehawk Event Services. A company that manages the largest sports event venue directory in San Diego. This directory is a powerful resource for streamlining the venue sourcing process. This directory, combined with a diverse marketplace of premium event service providers and highly trained Concierge staff creates efficiencies that will result in cost savings, safer and better executed events and more profit from event revenue streams.

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A Practitioner's Guide to Event & Venue Management Session 3

  1. 1. Stylehawk Event Services owner Cameron Ungar recently finished teaching a course for graduate-level students enrolled in the Sport Management Master’s Program at the University of San Francisco. The class, titled “A Practitioner’s Guide to Event & Venue Management,” was designed to give students a practical understanding of event and venue management from a professional who has worked in the industry for many years. Cameron used his real-world professional experience and his years of training in event and venue management to help give his students an idea of the breadth of knowledge and the diversity of skills required to be an effective event and venue manager. Cameron was uniquely qualified to teach this course, given that he has been both an event manager as well as a venue manager at several different facilities in Long Beach and San Diego. He has planned hundreds of events, and also knows a good deal about operations from the event venue side of things. During the course, Cameron tasked his students with producing a complete event plan for a hypothetical event (including cost estimates, production schedules, diagrams, staffing models, and service provider instructions). Students were also required to develop a Venue Operations Handbook that was to include policies and procedures to guide decision-making with regard to the use of the facility, and deliver an event briefing to the class, as if they were giving a pre-event staff briefing. Session 3: Slides 1 & 2 are background notes added for Slideshare to provide context.
  2. 2. Course topics, which were taught by Cameron and the guest speakers he brought in, included “Booking & Scheduling,” “Crowd Management & Emergency Response,” “Event Production,” and “Facilities Management.” As we know all too well at Stylehawk, event management and event coordination requires a delicate mix of art and science, which is something Cameron made sure to impart to his students. Event managers, as well as venue managers, must be extremely detailed and organized, but they must also be able to come up with creative solutions to complex problems and maintain some level of flexibility for when the unexpected occurs. Event and venue management isn’t for everyone. And it takes a team of dedicated professionals to do the job well. Here at Stylehawk, we’ve assembled a team that has many years of experience running successful events throughout San Diego, Los Angeles, and Orange County. We can use that experience to make your next event a success as well! It’s great to have someone like Cameron at the helm of Stylehawk. He is a recognized expert in the area of event management and event coordination and is now able to add the title of “Professor” to his resume. If you’re looking for a highly experienced team of event services professionals in Long Beach, San Diego, and other Southern California areas, contact us at Stylehawk. We’d love to talk with you about how we can help make your next event a successful one.
  4. 4. SESSION PLAN • Share 3 policy specifics from your A to Z guide • Class Discussion • Booking & Scheduling • Guest Speaker Roundtable: • Tim Ripke- Viejas Arena (SDSU) • Joe Rubendall- San Diego Tourism Authority • Josh Brown- SDCCU Stadium • Assignment Discussion • Group Work
  6. 6. BIG PICTURE • Time and space are the essential commodities of a public assembly venue and they are perishable. • Booking/ events drive ALL revenue. • Venue managers must create an environment conducive to successfully booking events. • Booking manager aims to book a full and diverse schedule consistent with the mission and public purpose of the venue and the economic expectations that govern its operations. • The venue should provide an environment that encourages maximum profit with minimum risk to BOTH the promoter and the venue.
  7. 7. CALENDARING • This is NOT administrative. This is THE critical business function. • Scheduling calendar used to manage time and space is the most important tool in controlling these assets. • Limit the cooks in the kitchen • Establish scheduling priorities • Maintain uncompromising integrity and accuracy
  8. 8. BOOKING • Booking- The process of identifying desired events or activities appropriate for the venue and the community, contacting event owners or promoters and engaging in negotiations leading to a contract. • Prime decisions in the booking process: • When? • Where? • At what costs? • Venue to determine priorities in booking model. Priorities account for venue mission and relationship with anchor tenant. • Booking is a relationship based process. Only works when there is honesty and accountability on both sides.
  9. 9. CONTRACT TYPES • Promote (buy)- Venue contracts for the event to happen and accepts all of the financial risk. • Co- Promote- Venue contracts for the event but shares the financial risk with the promoter or event producer. • Lease- The venue rents the space to a tenant/ promoter, thereby not incurring any direct financial risk. The willingness to incur risk is related to the venue’s mission statement and/ or funding model.
  10. 10. EVENT BOOKING PROCESS • Promoter’s inquiry for venue information • Costs, availability, production capabilities, capacity, available support, marketing opportunities • Venue to qualify the event. Is this the right building for this event? (collect intake form) • Can the event physically be held here? • Are there any calendaring constraints or conflicts with existing programs or sponsors? • Can the promoter afford the venue costs and still execute the event to the standard the venue sets forth? • Hold the date. Use specific Hold status language (hold, tentative, confirmed)
  11. 11. EVENT BOOKING PROCESS • Negotiate Lease Terms • Cost estimate • Published rate plans • Contract type (promote, co- promote, lease) • Confirmation of services provided • Execute Booking Agreement • Payment terms and payment schedule • Receipt of special event insurance • Develop ticket plan & establish on- sale date • Plan event • Execute event • Settlement
  12. 12. ASSIGNMENT
  13. 13. ASSIGNMENT • For your venue, develop the following: • Booking Policy • Identify who in your facility is responsible for managing the calendar? • How are calendar holds requested? • Define hold status? • Based on venue mission/ ownership model/ revenue needs determine priority model. • Outline booking workflow. • Create event intake form