Anyone that knows me well will have realized that I do not enjoy hosting parties at my house. I will even go as far as admitting that I never invite friends over for supper (sorry guys). I find it too stressful, too much work and in fact, I am to worried that I burn the veggies and cock it up. So for me, it’s easier to meet at a restaurant and not have to stress.
So when I was asked to be part of a team to organize our year end function at work, I thought, that’s cool, how hard can it be? We’re an organizing committee of 10 people so this won’t be too difficult. Boy was I wrong!
What started out as an organized function with a charity event linked to it, turned into a rushed, “run out of time”, make it happen lunch where we had just a mere 2 weeks to pull it all together. It just so happened that it was also during one of the busiest weeks in the year so some of the team members dropped out to focus on work commitments. It was then left to a handful of us who had limited or zero (me) event/function/hosting experience to pull the event off.
When I am stressed and out of my comfort zone, the only way I can feel in control is if I have everything organized, sorted out, all the boxes ticked. But working in a team where some people worked with different views of deadlines and urgency proved the biggest challenge.
Some days I was overwhelmed at the thought that this would be the biggest failure and that everyone would think I was useless (yeah… I know, I’m working on my confidence levels).
It was far from a failure. In fact, it turned out great!
Some lessons I learnt from this experience:
- If you provide people with good food, you are already half way there.
- Good music is a “must”. And yes, sometimes the old classics are what works best.
- Learn to delegate. You can’t do everything.
- Once you’ve delegated, trust that it will be done. Don’t keep asking for feedback. (sorry team, I know I nag in red pen)
- Ask for help. Roping in a colleague to handle all ‘budgetary’ issues was the best decision. Not only was she brilliant but at least none of the team had to watch the money.
- A good party doesn’t need to cost a lot of money. Cheap props from China Town and a box of Ferrero Rochers wins hearts.
- I am good at project management. Very good at it.
- Other people’s ideas are awesome. I need to stop being so risk-averse, open my eyes and give them a chance.
- Being a good team player is a part of who I am, but when I am in charge, I battle to motivate a team.
- I need to relax more. For pietsake, it’s a party Bron, not heart surgery.
I had so much fun and the feedback to the organizing committee from the rest of the team has been amazing.
They had fun. Memories were made. That’s what it’s all about!