Today’s post is from guest author, Ali McGuinn, who markets events for New Balance in Boston, Mass.

We’ve been managing a planner since middle school and we’ve been setting goals since our feet kicked that first soccer ball in second grade. But when did we learn how to choose priorities correctly?

Planning multiple events at one time not only requires the best to-do list application from the app store, but most importantly, requires self-disciplined organization and priority ranking.

The most effective way to get through event planning is by setting priorities and keeping them organized. We must set priorities for each project, or we’ll take the path of least resistance.

Try arranging priorities based on three criteria:

Is it time-sensitive?

Ask yourself, which event is next and how much of the planning do I have done?

I start my day by double-checking deadlines for creative marketing, product orders and race director needs. If I’m on-schedule for the event, I move onto the next check box. If not, I get it done right away.

What level is my brand represented at this event?

You’ll be giving the thumbs up at your events if you prioritize your to-do list.

If my brand is the title sponsor, or host of the event, it will most likely rank higher in my priorities and hence garner more attention and time from me.

I tend to start planning for these high-level events at least four to six months out, to allow myself ample organization and steady planning. I plan to work on the project a little bit at a time each week and then devote all my attention to it three to four weeks prior to event day.

What is the hardest task for me to accomplish today?

Remind yourself to tackle the most challenging chore first thing each morning.

Before I get caught up in the day-to-day grind, I devote 30 minutes to it and get it done. A huge weight is lifted off my shoulders and I can start to focus on other items the remainder of the day.

Remaining hand-in-hand with my three questions above is my to-do list and my specific folders per event. Without organization, my events would blur together and become chaos.

Remember, in the events world, it pays to set priorities and stay organized. Coming into event planning each day prepared will make your events that much more enjoyable.

Make it your priority to join our conversation on Facebook and Twitter.