After the event
Remember to evaluate all events and activities. You could use a formal evaluation system like a survey or a focus group, or you could simply have members of your organization ask participants informal questions during the event. The evaluation will give you invaluable information about your event.
Past Event Recording
If your event occurs monthly, seasonally, or even annually, the records of past events will be an invaluable resource as you begin the planning process. Past records may contain attendance figures, agendas and schedules, and will provide an evaluation of both positive and negative aspects of past events. Include in your past event recording the actual cost; this can be completed in the column next to the estimated budget for comparison. See second book in the budget actual.
Your notes about the event should include the publicity used, the attendance, and a general list of ideas that you would suggest to improve on for the following year. Use each event as a knowledge base to make your next event better. Take notes during the event of how much food is left over. Did you have enough? Did you have way too much? Is there a specific item that everyone liked/disliked? Was there something missing that people were asking for that should be included next time? How was the entertainment? Did you stay on schedule? Ask people as they leave what they enjoyed most/least.