Have you spent hours researching “how to start a career in event planning” and you’re still coming up empty handed…or feeling overwhelmed with all the information available online?
A lot of people want to be event planners – and unfortunately many new planners will work for free or don’t charge properly so their business doesn’t last long.
Let’s talk about 4 Tips To Start a Career in Event Planning so you’ve not only got a business you love but one that’s profitable too.
How To Start a Career in Event Planning
Event planning is fun, but it’s also a lot of work, and I want you to make money as a planner!
So, I’m going to share with you some really easy, and often free, tips to break into your dream career; whether that’s planning parties, weddings, fundraisers, festivals, or even kid’s events.
If you’re a natural at taking charge, can multi-task, and meet deadlines under pressure, then a career in event planning is for you.
- Event Planning Courses
Many local colleges offer courses and programs in event planning that cost approximately $3000-4000 a year or you can register for an online course. Online event planning courses have become the most popular alternatives to traditional education and offer a variety of benefits including lower cost and less time to complete the program.
Pros – You can study on your own time and often tutors are available to help you.
Cons – You need to carve out time for self study and actually do it.
Working with local non-profit organizations on event development is one of THE best ways to get event planning experience.
Before I started my business, to get experience, I was a committee member on The Relay for Life with the Canadian Cancer Society for 3 years, volunteered for other charitable events and ran my own small events.
Pros – Great way to get the experience you need and learn various areas of event planning, and is a great place to network.
Cons – Some events can take a lot of time – but then again, if you want to start a Career in Event Planning, then welcome to the real world of event planning!
Working directly with an established event planner or event planning company is the perfect way to break intro the industry and get the experience you need.
When you’re looking at planners to work with, be sure to pick ones based on your interests and what areas you need to learn i.e.: wedding planning vs. fundraising galas.
I recommend you have some experience and/or some educational background in event planning, before you contact professional planners about internships. I hear from many professional planners that they get a lot of email applications from people with little to no experience, and even though it’s “free” work, they still want to work with the best.
Remember, it’s their event and their reputation that’s on the line, so be professional when you approach other planners for their help.
Pros – Fantastic way to get real life experience and learn the ins-and-outs of the industry.
Cons – these are typically volunteer positions and you may feel like you’re being left behind or not used. This usually happens because planners feel too busy to train staff, so it’s important that you showcase your strengths before the event and pinpoint where and how you’ll be most useful to the planner and the overall event.
- Start an Event Planning Business
This one is my favorite but it doesn’t happen overnight and without a little experience in event planning and/or business. A few tips to consider and research before you set up shop:
- Decide which event market best suites your skills and passions. For example, do you prefer to work with CEOs or brides?
- Do a marketing plan, so you understand where and how you’ll build your business. This is also a good time to identify your ideal client.
- Register your business with your local or national business registry.
- Develop a network of suppliers and vendors.
- Get insurance for your business and events.
Pros – Freedom to choose your clients and who you work with.
Cons – It can be scary believing in yourself 😉
Now I’d love to hear from you.
What steps are you taking or did you take to start a career in event planning?
Thank you so much for sharing and contributing here. There’s nothing I love more than to see our event planning community grow.
Have an event-full week!