Backup Plans are Vital in Life and in the Office

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I’ve found contingency plans to be vital when planning an event, trying to foretell the future and just in life in general.

As I indicated in a previous post (here), our office is holding two food related fundraising events this week. I’ve learned more about how to estimate the amount of food 25 people will eat in the last 24 hours than I did working in food service for several years.

I’m excited to say so far, things are running smoothly. Co-workers have RSVP’d as asked (well, really when prodded and reminded). Food was purchased as planned and cooked. Now, all that has to happen is I will need to reheat and serve it in three hours.

Here’s where the contingency plans kick in. There are lots of them. If X happens then Y must occur. If A happens then B happens. I have probably five or six different options ranging from the mundane (someone drops the plate of food) to the catastrophic (we all get food poisoning).

The truth is when an event goes well, no one but the planner really knows how much work went into it. Yet, that doesn’t bother me. I know how hard I worked and hopefully my superiors know too.

Teambuilding For a Good Cause

One of my favorite things about my job is that on occasion, I get to plan events such as a ribbon cutting or organize a company-wide fundraiser.

I love event planning. I greatly enjoy figuring out the minute details and making sure everything goes according to plan. I revel in the logistics, particularly when there’s a good cause at stake.

Lat year, I organized a food drive. During a two-week food drive, my company raised more than $750 and collected more than 120 pounds of food for the Central Missouri Food Bank. The sense of accomplishment I and others felt as we handed over the check and the Food Bank representative collected the barrel was amazingly rewarding.

As my company has gone through transitions this year, we haven’t participated in as many charitable causes. While disappointed, I understood it wasn’t a top priority for those in charge.

So imagine my surprise when my company President asked me to organize a week of wearing jeans (for a price!) and two food events next week to raise money for the employees of one of our sister offices in Nashville who were devastated in the recent flood. I’ve never been so excited to plan a taco lunch or breakfast sandwich breakfast!

I think it is important for employees and managers to participate in these kinds of events. It builds a sense of being part of something bigger—bigger than individuals and bigger than the company. When done right, fundraisers can foster a renewed feeling of being part of a team. Every company can use more team building activities.