12 Types of Business Events (Plus How They Can Impact Goals)

Updated September 30, 2022

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An employee asks a question during a company-wide meeting surrounded by coworkers.

Organization events allow employees to have a space to have fun with their coworkers while completing activities and having conversations. Employers may incorporate events a few times a year to help maintain employee morale and job satisfaction. Understanding the different ways a business can use events to improve employee motivation and network relationships can help improve company loyalty.

In this article, we discuss how events can help exceed business goals and provide a list of 12 events you can consider planning and hosting.

The impact of business events

Events can help you exceed your business goals because they can help boost employee morale. When employees are happy and satisfied with their workplace, it may help them produce higher quality work more efficiently.

Employers can use events to develop company culture, which is the core beliefs, morals and mission a business holds that its employees aim to reflect in their work. When employees align with the values and mission of their company, it can help improve the quality of their work, allowing the business to meet its goals.

Related: 10 Reasons Why Employee Engagement Is Important

12 types of events

Here's a list of 12 different types of events your business can host to help meet its goals:

1. Trade shows

A trade show is an event for several vendors in the same industry to display their products, often hosted in a large space. Companies host or sponsor these events to generate more leads for their business and gain more brand awareness.

A lead is a potential customer for your organization. Brand awareness is how familiar consumers are with your brand when they see your logo. Sponsoring a trade show means a company provides funds or its products or services in return for the trade show hosts highlighting their brand.

When you host a trade show as a business, you can determine the rates for vendor booths, sponsorships, advertising spaces and speaking opportunities. Here are a few ways you can differentiate your company at a trade show:

  • Welcome visitors to your table

  • Use a presentation board, slideshow or videos

  • Promote your booth at a trade show on your social media platforms

  • Have a giveaway for others to take part in when they walk by your table

  • Create a visually pleasing table display

2. Conferences and seminars

Companies can invite professionals to their events from similar businesses or send a general invite to professionals working in the same industry. Conferences and seminars are places to expand your network, show your work off to other professionals in your industry and learn a new skill or topic.

You can expand your network at a conference or seminar because you're connecting with professionals who may work in similar roles as you. Building your network on behalf of your company can help increase your brand awareness.

It may also improve your business opportunities if you maintain a positive relationship with your network because they may recommend your brand if they hear about something that may benefit you. A conference or seminar is also a place where you can show off your work to other professionals in your industry.

You can do this by hosting meetings, presentations or showcases to talk about your products or services, industry trends or research results. Additionally, you can learn a new skill or topic when you attend a conference or seminar when you're listening to other professionals' presentations.

3. Holiday parties

Businesses can host holiday parties for their employees to show their appreciation for their hard work all year. Companies may also invite their customers to a holiday party to express their gratitude for their business throughout the year.

While a holiday party creates a lighthearted mood, it's helpful to remember to remain professional because it's a work event. To do this, you may find it beneficial to find the balance between fun and professional. Some activities you can include at your holiday parties are a photo booth, a gift exchange or an ugly sweater contest.

4. Appreciation events

Appreciation events are informal events companies can use to express their gratitude for their employees' work and dedication. These types of events can range from large retreats for employees exceeding their goals to a company dinner.

Companies may also invite customers to these events for their employees to build stronger relationships within a relaxed environment, which can help improve sales for a business. Events that show appreciation for employees and customers may increase company loyalty and satisfaction. Here are other types of appreciation event ideas a business can offer their employees:

  • Tickets to a musical, movie or sporting event

  • Daytime or nighttime cruises

5. Company milestones

Company milestones can range from a grand opening to the celebration of an anniversary. These events celebrate a business reaching a significant milestone they've worked hard to achieve. Those invited to the party can include employees, customers and vendors.

Depending on how large the company is and its level of brand awareness, the business may invite the local community to attend the event. Additionally, this type of event can feel similar to an appreciation event because they're showing appreciation for their employees who've worked hard to help the company achieve its goals.

6. Product or service launches

A product or services launch is a party for employees, investors and customers to be the first to hear about a company's latest development. Although, companies may choose to have only an internal meeting with their employees and investors to let them know about a new product or service they're going to create.

When a company hosts a launch party, it can post photos on its social media pages to generate excitement with consumers about an upcoming product or service. It may also encourage their party guests to post photos on their social media pages, talking positively about the product with a specific hashtag, which can also generate excitement around the launch.

Depending on the size of the company, it may invite the press to cover its event to share its launch on a larger scale. For example, the media may write an article or have a segment on a local news channel discussing the event.

7. Company dinners

Companies may take their employees, investors or customers out for a dinner to express their appreciation for their hard work and business. A company may also take its customers or investors out to dinner to help negotiate or close a deal. The dinner can provide a lighthearted and positive environment for professionals to relax in between discussing business negotiations.

8. Employee team-building retreats

Employee team-building retreats can help employees connect outside of a professional environment and build confidence in themselves. The confidence they develop on the retreat can help them in their role at work, which can increase their productivity and efficiency.

Companies may choose to take their employees on this retreat for a weekend once or twice a year where they can take part in indoor and outdoor activities. Team-building retreats may also provide additional training for their employees, such as sensitivity training.

Related: 72 Effective Team-Building Icebreaker Questions To Develop Rapport

9. Golf outings

Businesses may offer their employees, investors and customers a golf outing event. This type of outing is another way companies can share their appreciation or negotiate deals in a more relaxed environment. Golf can also be part of a bonding experience for those involved because they're sharing a common interest and having fun with each other.

10. Incentive trips

Incentive trips are used to help motivate employees to reach their goals by a certain time of year. Then they can earn a vacation from the company as a way to be rewarded for their dedication to their work. Companies often host these events at luxury resorts, either in tropical locations or overseas.

They may find resorts to sponsor the event, which can help the company develop more network relationships and increase their negotiation skills. Employees can use their time on the trip to relax and enjoy their time off so they can return to work refreshed to do their work.

11. Training workshops

Training workshops can take place inside the workplace to help educate employees on various topics, such as security or diversity training. They can change the layout of the room to encourage employees to talk with each other in a large group or form small groups to discuss the topics in more detail. Encouraging employees to talk with their team members can help make the gathering more exciting for them, especially if they find the topic challenging.

Related: How To Create Inclusion and Diversity Training

12. Charity events

Companies can host charity events where they can ask their guests to donate to a cause or buy a product or service in which the proceeds can go to the charity. The guests at this type of event can include the local community, employees, customers and investors.

This can help consumers have a positive view of the company, which may help convert leads into customers. It can also provide the company with a networking opportunity to improve its relationships with charity organizations.

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