Thinking of Becoming an Event Planner?
Here’s What you Need to Know First
If you’re thinking of becoming an event planner, there are a few things you should know. A job as an event planner or wedding planner always looks like lots of fun in movies and on TV; after all, your work revolves around planning and attending parties, so what’s not to love? The thing is, like most jobs of its kind, it can be a lot of fun, but it’s also always a lot of work. And, as an independent contractor, you have a lot of additional work-related details that you’re responsible for—you don’t necessarily have access to things like employer healthcare, for example, and in addition to the nuts and bolts of the job you’ll also spend a lot of time on administration and other tasks that aren’t quite as enjoyable as planning menus, or helping a bride shop for her wedding dress! For the right kind of person, however, a job as an event or wedding planner is an absolute blast, and a career that will provide a huge amount of professional and personal satisfaction.
Personal and Professional Attributes and Skills
Enrolling in a course designed to teach you all about the nuts-and-bolts aspects of coordinating weddings and other events is definitely a good way to kick-start your career in this industry, but just as important is having the right mix of skills and personal abilities that will help you make your chosen career a success. So what are some of the essentials?
- Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written
- Exceptional organizational skills—especially because successful event planners are usually working on multiple events at the same time
- Time-management and multitasking skills
- Be able to visualize the big picture without losing sight of smaller details
- The ability to stay calm and in control in a crisis
- Be able to quickly recognize and solve problems, and apply creative and unconventional solutions when necessary
- Be able to work with all kinds of people
- Be prepared to work long hours, including on weekends and public holidays
One of the most important aspects of the job is to have a strong love of and talent for working with people, and the ability to be tactful, patient, and calm with clients, vendors, and suppliers, in all situations. For example, one wedding planner and event coordinator jokingly describes her work as herding cats, telling the future, and reading minds—which speaks to the fact that in any job where you’re working with people to create something to their specifications, many clients don’t always know exactly what they want. Sometimes, that means you have to figure out what a client wants, even though they don’t even know themselves. As well as this, planning an event like a wedding often means trying to please multiple different people all at the same time—the bride and groom, plus two sets of parents, all with different ideas of what they want.
When it comes to the people aspect of the job, it’s not all about working with clients, however; a single wedding can involve dozens of different vendors, so an event planner also has to build up an extensive network of industry contacts to be able to do their job effectively. This is important because staying competitive in the event-planning industry requires having the right vendor and venue contacts to be able to offer clients plenty of choice and excellent rates. Established wedding planners agree that this is an aspect of the job that absolutely can’t be ignored.
As well as all this, if you’re someone who plans to run your own event planning business, you’ll also need a certain amount of competency in other areas too, such as marketing and advertising, accounting, and an understanding of the relevant legal aspects of the job, such as liability and contract law. With this in mind, it’s definitely a good idea to choose a course that covers all of this essential information.
Event Coordination is a Growth Industry
There are lots of things you need to consider when starting your own business, and one of the most important is whether the industry you’re interested in can actually support you. Is it a growth industry, or will you find that there aren’t enough clients to go round? Luckily, the news is all good for the event planning industry—the US Department of Labor predicts huge growth over the next ten years—a whopping 33% increase, which means it’s the perfect time to enter the industry.
Does this sound like the career for you? Click the button below to learn more about QC’s courses!