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Interview with an Event Expert and Being an Event Planner

Over the coming months I’ll be interviewing different event experts from various industries associated with event planning. Recently, I sat down with Andrew, an event planner with a specialty in food and beverage, to ask him about his experience and get his advice about being an event planner.

Being An Event Planner

CES – What’s your current position and title? Andrew – Event Planner with a high-end catering and event company that is dedicated to providing superior service.

CES – How long have you been in the event planning industry? Andrew – 10+ years

CES – How did you get started and what was your first job in the industry? Andrew – My mother was a caterer and I assisted her with the planning process when I was a teen. I gained hands-on experience starting in Banquets at a four-star hotel and progressed into managing restaurants shortly after. Throughout the years, planning events was always in the mix of my duties.

CES – What is your favourite part of working in the event industry? Andrew – Constant change.

CES – What’s your least favourite part? Andrew – Clients that don’t trust you and other “Planners” that don’t know what they’re doing. Maybe it’s more of a pet peeve!

CES – What skills do you think are necessary for being an event planner? Andrew – Being able to multi-task, adapt, constantly be organized, and people skills are very important. You have to know how to handle different situations and personalities.

CES – What’s ONE event tool that you can’t live without and why? Andrew – iPhone. Because I’m connected to phone, email and text and I can get answers quickly.

CES – What’s the largest event you’ve planned? Andrew – Planned: 500; Managed: 1000.

CES – That brings up a good point because we often see the terms “event planning” and “event management”. What’s the difference? Andrew – Planning is what you do before the event, like organize all the details. Managing happens at the event when you run the actual event.

CES – What is the most important asset when being an event planner? Andrew – Gaining field experience in all facets of the industry. For example: catering, planning, decor, production, lighting/sound/audio-visual, etc.

CES – What advice would you give someone who is considering being an event planner? Andrew – Measure twice; cut once. And ALWAYS treat your suppliers with respect.

In the comments below, let me know…

How do you choose a caterer?

Thanks for joining me!

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