One of the BEST parts of Community Living are the Celebrations! The Community Events that happen in the Common Area, open to all Residents to enjoy, where Residents Experience with various Cultural, Regional or National backgrounds come together to celebrate!
For Community Residents these are the only Events where they don’t have to take their vehicle out and wade through Traffic to reach the Event. They can leisurely stroll into the lawn or the party hall where the Community Event is happening!
The Atmosphere in these Community Events can be electric! The air is flavoured with the Spirit of Camaraderie and Neighbourly love, and for most Community Residents these Community Events are a great Reset button in a busy lifestyle.
Needless to say, Community Events are a major ingredient to enhance Resident Experience and contribute to the NPS of the Association Management Company / Association.
Over Time, Communities with the reputation of hosting rich Cultural Community Events become sought after by discerning Tenants. So, what’s the Secret of conducting great Community Events?
THE COMMUNITY EVENTS TEAM!
Every Community that conducts great Community Events also has a great Community Events Team. For Community Management Companies this is a small team internally that also usually handles Marketing and Communication. In the case of Self-Managed Communities it is a Cultural Committee formed of few Owners.
This Team chalks out the Community Event Calendar, Budgets, Responsibilities within the Team and finally executes the Event.
Cultural Committee with busy members typically invite volunteers from the Community to help in specific Community Event.
THE COMMUNITY EVENTS CALENDAR and TWO TYPES OF COMMUNITY EVENTS
The Community Event Calendar of the Community must have few types of Community Events.
- First type are the Community Events that will be financed and fully driven by the Association/Association Management Company.
- These are typically National or Environmental Community Events – e.g., National Day, New Year, Foundation Day of the Community, etc.
- These Community Events are strategised and driven end-to-end by the Community Events Team. They are budgeted for and financed by the Association or the Developer. Typically these Community Events invite participation from existing Vendors and other relevant Vendor Ecosystem.
- Second type of Community Events are those that are Cultural in nature and Open to all Community Residents – e.g., Holi, Eid, Christmas etc. and are SUPPORTED by the Community Events team, but driven by specific Volunteers within the Community representing the Culture.
- The Financing of these Community Events happen via collecting Contributions from interested Community Residents. Some financial support from the Association or Developer may be available.
- It is these Cultural Community Events that are highly enriching to all Community Residents as they broaden the cultural horizon of the Community Residents and can be a rich learning experience for growing children!
FINANCE FOR THE COMMUNITY EVENTS
Every Association must include Community Events Expenses in its Annual Budget. The Amount can range from 0.5% to 2% of the total Annual Budget.
The Budgeting tool of ADDA can be very useful as all Expenses being made against Community Events can show automatic Alert about Budget Usage.
- This is the First line of financing for Community Events.
- The Second Line of financing is from Community Residents themselves. Certain Community Events can invite Contributions from interested Community Residents. Or Community Event Ticketing can also be done for some Community Events.
- The Third Line of financing is from Sponsors. A part of the Community Events Team can invite sponsorship from Brands that are interested in providing an Exciting Resident Experience of their Product or Service to the Community Residents. Sponsorship Programs must be carefully crafted in keeping with the Residential Atmosphere and very HIGH RELEVANCE brands.
EXECUTION OF A COMMUNITY EVENT
Once the above foundation is in place – in many cases these are also captured in the By-Laws of the Association for continuity – the Execution Plan can be charted.
PRE-COMMUNITY EVENT ACTIVITIES
- If the Exact Date of the Community Event is not listed on the Community Events Calendar, decide the Dates.
- Identify the Exact team that will work on the Community Event and assign Responsibilities. A google sheet for each Community Event and a temporary WhatsApp group is best to track in one place.
- Identify the Venue and Venue logistics e.g., Seating, Lighting, AudioVisual Systems, Banner or Stall areas for sponsors etc.
- Depending on the Community Event plan, set up the “Purchase Requests” in your ADDA so the purchasing team (Treasurer or Accounts team of the Association Management Company) can start working on them. Typical purchase items are Food and Beverage, single-use Decoration elements, Photographer/Videographer, Entertainers etc.
- Announce the Community Event to the Community Residents using the “Announcements” feature of ADDA. If there are Performances from Community Residents part of the Community Event, share details and contact person for Entries!
- Keep the Excitement going among Community Residents with announcements on posts on ADDA
- Ensure the Community Event Expenses are being tracked in the Expense Tracker of ADDA. Any Sponsorships can be tracked as “Non Member Income” in the Income Tracker.
DURING COMMUNITY EVENT
- On the Community Event Day send the final Announcement to ensure Community Residents are ready for the Gala Evening/Day
- Ensure the Safety and Comfort of Participants have highest priority. No exposed Cables, no access to children to back stage etc.
- Take sufficient pictures and videos and post on ADDA so Community Residents who are traveling or Non-Resident Owners can also enjoy the Event virtually!
- Do not forget to publicly thank the Community Events Team and Volunteers for all their Organisational efforts. Also take the opportunity to share any highlights of the Community in the past days, or recognise an outstanding member of the Community Management team!
POST-COMMUNITY EVENT ACTIVITIES
- Celebrate within the Community Events Team for yet another memorable Community Event!
- Conduct a Post-Mortem with what went great and what had scope of improvement. Document this in the Community Events Playbook which can be a Document in the “Admin Files” on your ADDA. This will be immensely helpful in the subsequent Community Evenst. If the Google sheet created becomes a great template, that link can also be included in the Playbook. Look out for any other Re-Use elements that must be documented or well preserved (e.g., Decoration Items) for the next Community Event.
- Bask in the Glory of a Well-Organised Celebration!
Here is to a VIBRANT cultural life in your Community Living! What are your experiences of attending or organising Community Event?!