Sunday Side Event Management –
SE Manager (the Floor Manager)
CIAO to everybody,
Our special guest and processes and organization expert, Ivan Petkovic, continues his series about how to manage *Side events at Grand Prix*.
Today’s article is about an optional role, but very important one – the Floor Manager.
In previous articles, we have looked at an overview of the roles usually participating at running Side Events. Then we have taken a deeper look into Side Event Manager (part 1, part 2, part 3 and part 4). The second role we took a deeper look at was the Break Manager. Today we’ll take a look at the Floor Manager.
This role is also a primary contact with the Scorekeepers since SKs need to know starting table number for each event. The role would be really simple if space were not be limited, and events could be just stacked one after another, but that is rarely the case during the entire day of the Side Events.
One of the first things in the morning is to have someone check tables and table numbers (e.g. Help / Flex team). If missing, add missing table numbers. Check the venue plan since sometimes it might not represent the reality (on a couple of locations I discovered extra or missing tables). Also, keep in mind that the Sunday layout may be different from Saturday layout, for example, changes in table numbers or decreased or increased the number of tables per row.
In parallel, plan the space for ODEs and for the earliest scheduled (usually one of the biggest) event. There are a couple of things to watch for when deciding a space for ODEs:
- Ask the TO how much ODEs he is expecting, the number is usually in terms of 10-15 parallel ODEs. This number can start smaller but will increase during a day. Plan for ODEs to grow.
- They should be close to the SE registrations and SE Stage as judges who start them have to go to the stage to pick up product and players.
- Sometimes TOs prefer to have ODEs (and SE in general) close to the vendors, since, on Sunday, SE are most crowded part of the GP
Planning the earliest event should not be a problem since there is a plenty of space. Make sure you don’t stack it next to ODEs because of their growing mentioned earlier.
After the first events
During the afternoon, you need to have a table number of the next event ready ideally 30 mins before the event. That way the Kickstart and SK team can prepare the event.
Be mindful about the size of upcoming events and plan space for them. During the late afternoon, usually, you will run out of space to stack event. Here are some tricks you can use:
- Events shrink over time. Use some smaller events (e.g. Vintage) to fill in the gaps.
- Be mindful of potentially large events (usually those of the same format as GP) as they will require a large, uninterrupted portion of space. Sometimes a big event is planned for late in the afternoon, but with a limited number of rounds.
- Most of the events have a limited number of players that can enter. Nevertheless, sometimes the TO can decide on the spot to increase that limit
- Sometimes the TO decides to add new (unscheduled) events. Be ready to be flexible with space and raise a potential issue with the TO as soon as possible. In any case, it is your job to find a solution
- Moving events more than once is usually considered bad customer service. Check with the TO how he feels about moving events. It is a good idea to have events moved when they are about to enter top 8/16 (look “Top 8 (16) area” for details)
After an event starts, find out (by asking SK or HJ) the final number of players so you can start planning for next event. It is considered a good practice to round up the last table row used and not stack multiple events within the same row (unless they are really small). Extra available tables can be used for deck checks, land station(s) and/or prize station(s).
Some useful practices & tips:
- Have HJs or Kickstart Team report final number of players
- Round up rows of tables for more space
- Special requests – vintage players like to have some space so that cards don’t get stolen
- Last table calculation: Starting_table_number + Number_of_players / 2 -1
- Top 8 (16) area: If you have a relatively high number of events with top 8 /16, it might make sense to use a dedicated top 8 (16) are in order to have a smaller number of judges keep an eye on all finishing events. (This is a common practice on Friday which has a lot of GP Trail events with top 8)
Planning for venue breakdown could be a second major task of Floor Manager, depends on the TO. It is a good idea to initiate this topic with the TO and SE Manager as early as possible by asking his plans. Usually between 12:00 and 15:00 you should have a plan for how venue breakdown should look like. Plan last events, especially the bigger ones, as far away from the breakdown as possible. In case one of the later events becomes much larger than expected, and you need additional space, there might be an option to delay the breakdown. But use this option only as last resort and discuss it with the TO.
That is it! You made it! Thank you for reading!
I hope this series of articles was helpful. In case you would like to add something that is not mentioned here, please contact me or any of the contributors via judge apps (or any other means 🙂 ).
Once more I would like to take all the people who made this series to become true: Jurgen Baert, Alfonso Bueno, Matteo Callegari, Lamberto Franco and Riccardo Tessitori.
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