1. Plan to have the awards on a Friday or Saturday so guests don't use work as an excuse to leave early.
2. Have 2 or 3 pre-event meetings so everyone is clear about their responsibilities.
3. Draw up a detailed MC script so the event can be hosted smoothly.
4. Start the event on time.
5. Limit the number of speeches.
6. Present the awards after dessert so that everyone's attention is focused on the award winners.
7. Make time for dancing; remember everyone is there to have a good time.