New openings…

Our nations’ capital sure does have its fair share of restaurant openings and July is certainly going to be a busy month.  Finding something new as a corporate event planner is hard work!  To find that new place where there is a glint of interest but where most people haven’t yet had the chance to go is key in getting those clients to say “yes” to your event invitation.

Of course there is about 50 new openings in July however below are the ones I am excited about!.

Mondrian London – Sea Containers House

I was lucky enough to do a hard-hat tour of the Mondrian London at Sea Containers House and whilst it is not due to open until late Summer, I am pretty excited.  The Mondrian will host a variety of bars and restaurants none more exciting that the roof top bar with its panoramic views of London.

In terms of meeting and events space, the hotel offers a boardroom which can accommodate up to 273 reception or 176 banquet. The hotel also boasts a private screening room which will seat up to 56 theatre style (perfect for an event with a screening).  Without having a firm opening date it is quite difficult to commit to an event however it really is worth a look for when it does even, if it is just to get yourself an invite to the launch party (hint hint). You can find out more about their event spaces and floor plans here.

 

Hawksmoor – Knightsbridge

Need I give an opening blurb? Everyone knows Hawksmoor and if you don’t, you’ve been living under a rock!

The newest addition to the Hawksmoor family is on Yeoman’s Row, just off the Brompton Road and very close to Harrods. It’s this location that makes it perfect for overseas clients and visitors were they can be dazzled by it’s very glam art-deco interior.  The usual steak is on offer alongside a variety of seafood dishes.  This branch opened on 3 July and a pretty good guess would be that it is always full so book early for both private and group reservations!

 

Lima Floral

This is the second opening of Lima with the first Loma Fitzrovia in 2012 and,  which last year, became the first Peruvian restaurant in Europe to gain a Michelin star.  According to their website, Lima  is

“showcasing Peru as a country full of diversity: ecologically, culturally and historically, sharing an authentic and native culinary offering”

 

This second offering in Covent Garden will have a restaurant and a bar area where instead of the full dining experience, patrons can just sample ‘piqueos’ or “small plates’. You can find out more about Lima here to see how you can use this unique restaurant for your event needs!

 

 

 

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Events Managers and the Bribery Act

Three years ago, there were seldom other words at work that annoyed me more than “The Bribery Act”.

The Bribery Act 2010 (The Act) first came into force back on 1 July 2011 and for a while evoked mild panic when trying to determine what you could not only offer to clients but to also accept yourself.  I would say the hype has now definitely died down and hand on heart can say I was faced with no more than 5 incidents where I was asked to tell clients the exact cost of hospitality I was offering and in all instances, it was cleared.

It seems we all panicked for nothing and from any research I have done on The Act it seems that our lovely corporate hospitality offerings were not in-fact the focus of  The Act.  Everyone knows that in business, the offer and acceptance of hospitality is a legitimate and well-recognized form of actually doing business.  Leisurely lunches not only spent at Michelin starred restaurants but boxes at Ascot, Henley and the like are all common place and I think, the prime opportunity to actually talk business.

In regards to what constitutes a breach of the act, according to the SFO (Serious Fraud Office), they will only prosecute if it is in the public interest to do so.  I wanted to be a Lawyer, however I am not, so for more information, you can find their guidelines for business here.

Now when I said that the words annoyed me in wasn’t in regards clients, it was in relation to myself.  We event managers get offered A LOT of free stuff.  We get offers to stay in fancy hotels for the night to do site inspections, we get offers to the opening of an envelope (must start going to more of these) and are also invited to take frequent trips overseas as hosted buyers.  All of this is legitimate and I personally got a lot out of trying different champagnes and flying to Paris however when The Act first came to life we had to start being more accountable and writing down everything we accepted.  Writing down 2 x glasses of champagne and 1 x pen as a gift, to me, sounds stupid but apparently its necessary in order to comply with The Act.  I make sure I write down everything but I honestly wonder do all Event Managers? If you are an Event Manager and reading this I would be really grateful to hear whether you do or not?

 

michelle

 

 

 

 

Liebster Award

Although I profess I do love a Monday.. THIS Monday was made all the more special after doing the obligatory Twitter check first thing, only to find out the fabulous Events Northern Limited  had put me forward for the Liebster Award!

libster award

The Liebster Award is a blogging award that is based on pure nomination by other Bloggers, so, quite the honor!  Now, in order to participate in the award program there are a list of rules!  I have copied the rules from my nominator Events Northern Limited.  The rules are as follows:

The Official Rules Of The Liebster Award

If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:

  1. thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
  2. display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post.)
  3. answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.
  4. provide 11 random facts about yourself.
  5. nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 1000 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)
  6. create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.

You mus list these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here.) Once you have written and published it, you then have to:Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)

The questions I need to answer are below.  I cannot wait to pay in forward at the end.

When and why did you start blogging?

I started blogging in 2007 however started this blog in 2012.  I realized that us event managers have a quite a glamorous life with loads of things to write about and me being a geek means I love an excuse to write and  thus my blog was born.

Describe your blog?

I try and make my blog about both my professional and personal life as an event manager and try to be truthful about my experiences everyday.  I want to bring my personality to my blog so it’s not generic.

What is your favorite color?

Polk-dots are my favorite color

What are your blogging aims for the future?

I would like to keep blogging, producing one or two pieces a week and increase my readership.  I would love, one day, to work on my blog full-time but I think that would mean coming out of the field of events and I think you need to live it to be able to write about it?

How do you find inspiration?

Every day. If I am off sick and think it’s a worthy piece to write about event managers and being sick I will.  If I am at a networking event for the 3rd time that week and am sick of eating canapes for dinner… I’ll write about that! I write about our everyday world!

What is your ultimate indulgence?

Wine and cheese. But really strong cheese – I can easily do a whole block of Blacksticks Blue! try it – its amazing!

What is your ideal job?

Running my own event & social media company which would also allow me to blog all day long!
How much time do you spend blogging each week?

Perhaps 2 hours or so? My finance and I worked out the best idea the other day.  He wanted to watch rugby, I wanted to blog so we took my laptop to the pub, he watched the rugby, I typed away and we were still together!

What is your worst habit?

Being hyperactive.  I have too much energy until about 11.00 pm when I pass out but during they day I try to cram so much in and round around so much its exhausting to watch.

Tell us about the best event you have ever been to?

The best event will be this year! I am getting married.  Best event so far would have to be a circus event I did at work! I love the whole production and designing the overall theme and this one was epic!
Where is your favorite place in the world?

Sri Lanka

Eleven random facts about me!

I used to be an International Flight Attendant, I studied Criminology at University, I am getting married this year, I live in Weybridge, I work for  Law Firm, my favorite food is ham and cheese toasted sandwiches, I often leave my bike parked in the same spot for months, I hate fizzy drinks, I have 2 sisters, I have 4 parent and my favorite color lipstick is RED!

I am nominating the following blog (Event Planner Evolving) http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/63314681/ and my questions are!

  1. how did you come to be in event management?
  2. what are your favorite events to run
  3. If you weren’t working in events, what would you do?
  4. where do you live?
  5. what is your favorite color?
  6. what is your worst habit?
  7. who do you admire?
  8. what time do you wake up each morning?
  9. whats your favorite medium of social media for events?
  10. where were you born?
  11. how many siblings do you have?

Staggering home from events!

Whilst it’s now becoming commonplace for businesses to offer their employees flexible working arrangements. I wonder how the events industry is following suit?

Flexible working can include anything from job sharing, staggered hours (perhaps to avoid peak travelling time), working from home and flexitime!

We event managers know that on event days and, in the lead up to event day, you can be working from 6.00 am through to midnight and there is no way you could work from home but, what about non-event days?

I am very interested to find out which event managers out there do have flexible working agreements in place and whether it is openly encouraged!

I would be ever so grateful if you would help me by filling in the survey below!

It’s all about the networking…

As much as I like the free champagne and canapés, you do get tired of it after a while. What I never get tired of though is networking.

Wikipedia defines business networking as “a socioeconomic business activity by which groups of like-minded businesspeople recognize, create, or act upon business opportunities”.

Networking is not only a powerful tool when trying to score yourself a new job.  It is THE most powerful tool if you are looking to find investors or, to win new customers.

I love meeting new people whom do either the same job or similar to me, and I love hearing their interpretation of their role.

I also love hearing how people got to where they are and where they want to go… Ambitious people inspire me, as do people whom are actually interested in other people and not just for their own selfish gain. I love people, and its for that reason, I love networking!

Finding an event to network at isn’t difficult. Eventbright runs an event to suit every interest and if you can’t find one that suits, make your own.  I run an networking evening for Event Managers, you can sign up below!

If the thought of networking terrifies you.. don’t fret! Here are my top 5 tips to ensure you network like a pro:

  1. Always, always have a business card handy. Professionally presented (i.e not just laying loose in the bottom of your handbag)!
  2. I can say this because I am a woman.  If you are trying to infiltrate a conversation and need an opening line go for.. “Am so sorry to butt in but I had to ask you where you got your skirt, dress, handbag etc”… (flattery works every time)
  3. When you finally get talking, always repeat the persons name.  People love that.. It makes them feel important!
  4. I always say something completely random that reflects my personality. It may not be the most professional approach but I can guarantee I know more people than most and they remember me because I bring my personality to every conversation.
  5. If you drink then enjoy a drink.  I don’t feel comfortable around people that don’t drink. I think its pompous.  Again, this is my opinion but I always relate better to people who aren’t afraid to let their hair down.

So go forth and network.  My father taught me when I was very young that you will always come across people that think they are better than you. They aren’t! You are the most important person in the world and don’t let anyone make you feel intimidated!

Try and remember this next time you feel shy or not worthy to contribute to a conversation… go forth and network! You have only things to gain… I promise!