People love to get together for all kinds of different celebrations. Whether it’s tying the knot, a birthday party, music festival, product launch, convention, you name it – events come in all shapes and sizes. At the root of those events, someone is responsible for coordinating all the details and making sure things go off without a hitch.
Over the next 10 years, the meeting, convention, and event planning industry is expected to grow at 9.9% (compared to a 6.5% national average) and currently has an average salary of around $42,379. That salary can climb quickly depending on your location, clientele, and types of events you specialize in, too.
Before you decide if this career is for you, consider the following five questions that are paramount to being successful in the role:
1. Do you like people?
All kidding aside, you will work very closely with all kinds of different people – some nice and some not so nice. Events are stressful and exciting all at the same time and emotions can run wild at times.
Are you more on the extroverted end of the social spectrum? Do you get energized by human interaction rather than feeling constantly burned out and looking for a hole to crawl into? Networking and word-of-mouth can be key drivers in career growth too, so make sure you’re a socialite.
2. Are you an organization freak?
Planning an event is all in the details, and you need to stay organized and on top of specific dates, special requests, marketing campaigns, and much more! Being organized and using your time effectively is crucial to succeeding in the role of an event planner according to Eventbrite, an online event management platform.
If you’re the type that constantly loses things, thinks they’ll remember everything without writing it down, and doesn’t carry a daily planner with them, you may want to look for another career.
3. Do you want to own your own business?
While not required, event planning can allow you to really make a name for yourself by creating your own business. Working for yourself can be very rewarding if you’re a self-starter with a diverse set of skills.
Technology now allows for the easy creation of a professional website, accounting and all of the other areas that were once barriers to entry for sole proprietors.
4. Do you like to travel?
Event coordination involves visiting the venue during the planning and execution stages to ensure everything is planned to perfection. As an event planner, you may have to travel several hours away from your home base, or even out of state or internationally if you so choose.
Also, don’t forget about vendors and clientele, both of which you will have to likely travel to meet with. Trades shows, for example, happen all over the country and are only successful if they’re executed properly.
5. Do you have any experience?
Experience trumps a degree; however, a degree in Communications, Hospitality, Business or Marketing can go a long way to set you apart. Get as much experience as you can in project management, software like Excel, and the ability to solve complex problems with adaptable solutions.
Start small at first and find out what areas you’re most interested in, gaining experience through shadowing and working as an assistant to someone who is more experienced than you. Once you find your niche, go all in and get as much experience as you can, while using every available opportunity to network.
How did you fare? Did you answer yes (or at least maybe) to all five? If you did, you’d likely be an excellent candidate to pursue a career as an event planner. If you didn’t, don’t worry, there are plenty of other options for exciting and growing industries out there.
Just remember to always do thorough research on a career before locking yourself in. There’s nothing worse than graduating with a degree that you realize is not right for you only a couple years into your professional life.
This post was curated by guest bloggers and staff at Eventbrite