How to host your event like a pro

Pauline Kwasniak
4 min readMar 8, 2017


Long before I have been involved in professional and corporate event management and venue finding- I was a hostess.

As a fashion model, part of our job was hostessing various events, product launches or simply press calls for products or companies.

Now, I also host events for my clients and I must say this is one of the most excititng parts of my job as an event manager.

However, please do not forget not every events manager can be an excellent event host- usually a different set of skills is needed ad if you have never worked as a host it could be difficult. You could plan and execute your event to perfection but hosting an event is a whole other level.

Do not treat this job lightly- I dare to say this is one of the most important positions during any event . I will explain why and I will also add my top tips on how to host your event like a pro. These tips are based on years of international experience in fashion, PR, marketing and events industries. You can trust in my experiences and expertise.

Presence and appearance

Do not underestimate your appearance. You must look and behave impeccable. You are the first person your guests encounter, when entering an event. You should reflect the prestige of the event with your presence.

You will be surprised how many people pay attention to little details. Before I will face the voices of oppositions from feminists and liberal rights activists (”you shall be allowed to wear what your soul desires” etc etc…) I will say this: NO YOU CANNOT WERAR WHAT YOU WANT.

In the professional surroundings it is our duty to behave accordingly to the situation and uphold certain etiquette. Would you like to be operated by a doctor without a uniform? EXACTLY!

Make up: never ever wear strong or dark make up (strong smokey eye or red lipstick). It would not be elegant and very inappropriate. When a man arrives to an event with a female guest, he shall be looking into her eyes- NOT YOURS. He should be giving her all of his attention, and the female guest should feel special during the event. Our job is to enhance their experience and minimise any paint points that might cause dissatisfaction. This applies to any hospitality profession: receptionist, waitress, hostess etc. This has nothing to do with objectifying women, as it is a simple rule of elegance and professionalism.

Dress: No long cleavage or short skirts. Remember to wear dark tights and covered shoes. The amount of “high-profile” events I have attended and witnessed the event managers and hosts being dressed inappropriately. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth and takes away from the prestige of your event. Cover up ladies — you can be elegant and sophisticated , yet professional. Vulgarity does not equal feminity. Once again , think about your guests and the various age groups - you are here to make other guests feels special. Your dress should be professional and elegant- but quiet simple and effortless. Do not try to upstage the guests. They are the ones who should feel wonderful and special- not you.

Myself- hosting an event for a client. Simple black dress, minimum make up and a nice red scarf to add to the visibility.


The host should have access to all the information and lot of knowledge about the overall schedule of the event and event venue. At any point and if a quest asks you a question- the host should answer. If the host cannot answer, she or he should direct the guests to the appropriate person/point where the question can be answered. Make sure you know exactly where the bathroom, elevators, cloakrooms and smoking area are located- these are the location points guests often look for. These little things will make your guests feel welcomed and taken care of . You should be providing all the information when needed.

Madam and Sir- not guys!

Address your guests by Madam/Sir . Certain countries and customs allow for more flexibility . Often times in Ireland you will be greeted by “Hi Guys”. this is fine if we are walking into a pub, but not when attending a lovely event. Once again , make your guests feel special. Address them with respect.

Savoir- vivre

The most simple definition of savoir vivre is that it means “knowledge of life.” The two root words are from the French. Savoir means “know” and vivre means “life.” The more modern, dictionary definition now refers to how to properly act in polite society.

Association: Savoir vivre ties in with other French concept and phrase: Savior faire, which means knowing how to act, or how to actively live with savoir vivre.

If you though you can just put any person on the spot to welcome the guests you are wrong. That person should be trained and have a sufficient knowledge of savoir vivre rules

Actually, any person in the hospitality business should possess this crucial knowledge (not only in the luxury or 5 star properties ).

You should know how to behave; for example if you are to welcome a couple arriving together, you should welcome or address a female guest first, and later the man . There are many rules or social behaviour you should look at.

To conclude: Always put your guests first and ensure all efforts are made to make them feel special

So think about it and next time hire a pro or become one!



Pauline Kwasniak

Providing digital marketing strategy and education for the events industry and MICE professionals Agency and Community