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Tis the Season – one drink to many

For anyone working within the events industry over the festive period, and Christmas parties especially, you will no doubt have an occasion on which one guest or more may have just a little bit to much to drink. Ho, Ho, Ho indeed, but what are we meant to do when either our clients or our guests take things a little to far, and need to be taken aside to “sleep it off”?

Both our reputations and those of the venues we represent are on the line, and responsible drinking policies aside, sometimes things get out of control very quickly, with it is easy to lose track of exactly what is going on. A couple of pointers therefore, as usual a guide and not exclusive of any other methods you may have to ensure that things go smoothly and without incident;

Limits
As part of the ongoing discussions that we wil have with our clients, ensure that some kind of starting limit is in place that allows the flow of alcohol to be controlled. Whilst the guest need not know these limits are in place, it creates the need for tracking, and a time at which you can see just how much is being consumed over any given timeframe. Whilst this is an easy sell to the client (it allows for them to feel they are in control of a £ spend) it also gives you the breathing space to call time on any out of control consumption

Who
By asking the right questions we can determine who will be attending the event. Who are the clients, what is the men / woman split – is the event over lunch or dinner…..these and other questions will allow us to determine the format and likely “state of mind” of our guests come the end of the night.

Be in control
Don’t forget, as a guest (you, the event manager as it were) in a venue, you have every right to call a halt to the service of beverage if you see fit, and the venue themselves for sure have a similar policy in place that prevents things getting out of hand. No venue or hotel wants to have intoxicated guests in their event space or bar area, and as such, always be sure to check out their policies and security procedures, just in case. Whilst it may not be easy to be the one that takes control and says “no” – you may well have to have the final say and stand by your decision to call time.

Be Prepared
People are not always pleasant when they have had to much to drink. Whilst I may talk more than I usually do and become all “flowery” – others find themselves unable to control their mouths, and if you have to deal with some unruly guest, you could find yourself having to put up with a barrage of foul language. This of course may be more of an infrequent occurence, but my best advice would be that if you feel that there is a time when this may be something you will have to deal with, then revert back to the earlier point and working closely with your venue.

Like with most topics, there are many more things to consider, feel free to touch base with your ongoing thoughts and ideas about how best to ensure that the events you run over this period go off without a hitch

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