Hosting a private event can be a great way to celebrate a special occasion, cultivate new contacts or clients or even raise money for your favorite charity. Unlike hosting a party in your home, you don’t have to set up, clean up or take out the trash when you are done. Having someone else doing all the meal prep, planning, catering and serving also leaves you free to focus solely on your guests. Here are three tips to make your next private event a stunning success.

Plan Well in Advance

The further in advance you plan an event, the more likely it is to go off without a hitch. Planning several months out will give you a chance to secure the best venue and get your event on your guest’s calendars first before they get filled with other things. If you are not great at planning, you can hire an event planner or book a venue that will do it all for you.

Plan With Your Guests in Mind

The ultimate goal of any event is to give all of your guests the best experience possible. You may or may not know all of your guests personally but that doesn’t mean you can’t find out something about them in advance. One of the best ways to do this is to send out a short questionnaire with your invitation for them to fill out when they RSVP. In addition to asking them about any dietary restrictions, you can ask them things like what their favorite types of music or songs are, who they would most like to meet or what their favorite foods are. While you can’t cater to everyone, the more you can cater to each of your individual guest’s needs, the more likely they are to have a great time.

Don’t be Afraid to Set Firm Deadlines for RSVP’s

Creating a great event means knowing exactly who you are planning for. It is far better to host a well-planned event with a few guests than have an abundance of guests show up at the last minute and create chaos. In addition, the more smoothly your event goes off, the more likely you are to get prompt RSVP’s for your next event.