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How to manage incentives when things get hot... by Arnout Bouckaert

25 October 2019
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Spring and September are the two annual peaks of activity for incentive events at VO. And when you have to organise 7 in the same month, it's hard work! Arnout, a member of the team working on incentives at VO Event, gives us his advice on how to win this race against time.

September 2019 will have been hard work for the incentive team - and for Arnout, a young member who is building up experience at VO Event since 2017. Seven national and international events to be managed in a single month! And Arnout was managing four of them solo:

  • a weekend with a conceptual theme in Rotterdam for a leasing company, with tailor-made challenges in the city centre, followed by dinner based on the theme of “Peaky Blinders”, using a historic boat fitted out as a permanently moored hotel where guests would spend the night;
  • a 3-day seminar in Marche-en-Famenne with team-building opportunities for a pharmaceutic company employees;
  • an incentive coupled with team-building in Ghent, requested by a consulting company, with a concluding event in a historic building in the city;
  • a Family Day for a HR company near Brussels, in a park with several attractions, tailor-made for families.

 

Meeting so many challenges one after the other requires endurance and discipline. And, above all, means establishing rules for yourself....

 

Stay focused on the priorities

Preparing and delivering multiple events consecutively on a daily basis is all about organisation, vision and thinking. Long live To-Do lists! Another tip: arrange your schedule in half-days. Devote the morning entirely to the closest event, and the afternoon to the other events you are working on, always with an instinct for focusing on the priorities and evaluating the importance of answering or ignoring specific emails and phone calls.

 

Take two types of break during work

One is to take stock, get a little perspective on the progress and keep an overview. The other is to relax and recharge your batteries - play table tennis, go for a walk, or have a coffee break.

 

Switch off completely as soon as you finish your working day

At home, it’s important to press the off button and do something different: read, watch a series, go for a bike ride... Switch off and recharge your batteries. Running a string of incentives is a marathon that drains your energy. Without a break, you will be the one heading for a breakdown.

 

Always bear in mind that every problem has a solution

So never panic. To manage this, you also have to ensure that you have earned the client's trust, so that he or she can rely on your understanding and ability to keep a sense of balance if things go wrong. And if you really are having a hard time, or doubts, or trouble with an incentive, never hesitate to ask your closest colleagues for help.

These are some of the commandments that apply to the twenty or so incentives created each year by the Incentive Department at VO Event.

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