How do you keep large crowds under control?

Is there a rush at the entrance door? People clamoring to get into your event? Safety is a concern when crowds gather – not just for large sporting events, but even for business conferences or galas. Here are a few tips for getting everyone organized.

Keeping reception or buffet lines orderly with velvet ropes, temporary walls and ushers are soft ways of controlling the flow.  At the same time, the crowd experiences a calmer and more enjoyable experience.

There are also a few other techniques you can use, courtesy of scientific studies that focus on the psychology of crowd control.   For instance, there is a direct relationship between high temperatures and unruly behavior.  When people are hot they are uncomfortable and irritable.   (Ever wonder why it’s always cold in the movie theaters?) Monitor room temperatures not just for crowd control, but for your guest’s comfort.

If people feel they are being watched, they behave more appropriately.  Even the appearance of a security camera gives them the impression they are being monitored.

There is such a thing as “queue” technology. Lines can be designed to feel fast moving, important or entertaining—-all things that will help crowds to wait in an orderly manner. (Just think of how long you’ve waited in a line at Disney World!)  People would rather wait in one line with multiple cashiers, then trying to find the shortest line among several.


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