trivia.night.corporate.jpgTrivia night corporate

Here’s one that I’ve consistently gotten for the past eight years I’ve been doing this – in fact, I heard it just last week! Somebody calls me up, wanting to know how to run a trivia night for a corporate group. But unlike prospects who are simply looking for unique ways to entertain employees or clients, these folks specifically want trivia – because that’s exactly what they’ve been doing!

It’s fun hearing from folks who are already producing company trivia nights for staff or customers. For one thing, it means they actually care enough about the loyalty of these valuable stakeholders to actually DO something, not just smile and say “thank you” for months or years of dedicated service/patronage. But it’s also particularly enjoyable for me because when groups are already accustomed to trivia team building events, I don’t have to “sell” them on it, you know? They already get why it works!

For these types of inquiries, the story usually goes something like this: every few months or perhaps annually, the department or company puts on a corporate game show quiz. It’s done completely internally, meaning a small social committee of (usually) junior-level staff is tasked with putting on the entire show. They do everything: write the questions, set up the space, secure prizes, send out invites, and one or two of them emcee the event. It’s often quirky and clunky, but it gets the job done.

However, there is now a problem. The event has grown in popularity, or perhaps they want to replicate what they’ve informally done onsite to a larger event for an important audience of clients or executives. It’s one thing to produce an office trivia party for a group of colleagues, but quite another if, say, you now want to have a trivia event at the annual sales conference (click here for a relevant case study, to see what I mean).

How exactly do you know when it’s time to “level up,” and bring in a professional trivia company? I’ll explain below!

First of all, the fact that you’re reaching out to me (or even just searching around online to see if vendors like TrivWorks exist), means that your homegrown corporate game show has moved beyond the training wheels phase. I suspect that you have received great feedback on the event or events you have produced thus far, and now that you are being asked to do this on a grander scale, you are looking to hand the operation over to the experts.

Congratulations – you’ve already realized that the time to act is now!

I’ll give you two examples of this happening to other office party planners like yourself. Several years ago, I was contacted by Advertising Age magazine. They had been putting on a series of informal trivia parties for their loyal advertising agencies in New York City, whose business they valued and wanted to reward with fun, high-energy social events. Every few months, several staff members would go to these agencies and put on the show. The events were so well-received that they decided to do a “culminating” event at the end of the year, inviting ALL of these loyal agencies to send a team to compete in a game show grand finale of sorts. They realized that this final event had to be special, so they brought us in. It was a huge success, and an absolute blast! We did this every year for about three years, and it was tremendous fun (follow this link to read more about it).

Another example is from more recently, the inquiry I received last week which was mentioned above. A prestigious country club had put on a private trivia night for their distinguished membership, as a means of providing a fun summer social/networking experience. The event was a total success, and people loved it – however, the staff of the club realized (as most who put on these gigs do) that producing a corporate trivia night isn’t as easy as it looks. They want to do it again next summer, but this time they want to have the professionals take the reins: write trivia questions that are perfectly suited for their audience, bring in an experienced game show host trivia event emcee, and execute a seamless, flawless production.

What I’ve found in years of doing this is that when groups who have put on their own trivia gigs in the past want to “level up,” they are always happy they did. It’s a proven activity, after all – that is, there’s no risk that the audience won’t enjoy it, because you already know that they do! Instead of stressing out about the details, the planner can now sit back and enjoy the show, without having to worry about all of the stuff that he/she previously had to occupy their thoughts with.

It’s a relief, and it should be. It’s also like anything else, in that if you want it done right, you turn to the experts. You may have had success cutting your own hair up until now, but if you’re planning to go to the ball, you’ll need to first visit the salon. What’s great about bringing in the pros with corporate event entertainment and team building vendors is that they will enhance things in ways large and small, to make the overall experience more memorable and enjoyable for your audience. And when your job is to create fun corporate activities, NYC or anywhere, that’s ultimately what you’re seeking to do, isn’t it?

If you’re reading this blog post, then you’re probably surprised to learn that you’re not the first person who has ever looked for a way to “level up” your amateur company trivia event into a full-blown production. I assure you that it’s more common than you think – that if your event is important to you, if you REALLY need to up the game and impress a room full of people that are essential to your operation, that you’re making the right choice!

For another relevant article on producing a company trivia event, visit www.entrepreneur.com/article/219837