✤ Ensure that each guest is comfortable by positioning them with at least one or two other people they know or have met before.
✤ Have realistic expectations of your guests’ social capabilities. For example, it’s unlikely that an extremely shy person is suddenly going to come out of their shell if you place them at a table with people they don’t know.
✤ Don’t force your single guests together, but if you have two guests who you genuinely think will hit it off, position them at the same table so they have a chance to get to know each other.
✤ Begin working on your seating plan as early as possible, even if you’re still waiting on a few RSVPS. If you have the foundations in place, it’s easier to re-jig seats at the last minute if some guests can’t attend. Work on an A2 piece of paper, writing each name on a post-it note, drawing your configuration and reshuffling seating as you go. Then draw a final solution on the opposite page.
✤ Display your seating chart on a blackboard or pin board so guests can easily find their place. You could also position place cards on tables so everyone knows where they’re meant to go.