So you have your events in full swing and now you’re thinking about an event certification…
Or, you’re getting started as an event planner and wondering if a certification helps you book events.
If you’re anything like me, you have thought about it – A LOT!
Today we are discussing the truth about event planning certification.
What’s an Event Planning Certification?
By definition, a certification is an accredited designation that you’re an expert in a specific field and that you have the experience to back you up.
In other words, it’s a title that an event planner earns by taking an exam, after years of experience in planning events.
If you’re new to the industry and don’t have any experience, how do you get an event planning certification?
You don’t! Not really anyway.
Event planning certifications don’t technically exist because the industry is unregulated.
Here’s the truth: event planning certifications don’t guarantee that you get hired over those without an event planning certification.
A Certificate of Completion
What’s the difference between an event certificate and a certificate of completion.
Often confused with the term “certification,” a certificate of Completion is a document for new and experienced event planners that proves that you have passed an event planning course and have extensive knowledge of the industry.
It shows that you have taken the initiative and have the willingness to learn about event planning – something most clients are thrilled to see.
Being an event planner requires you to know and understand how to plan events, manage budgets, negotiate contracts and know enough marketing to garner interest in the event. An event planning course is the quickest, simplest and most-affordable way to gain that knowledge.
The majority of event planning courses are offered online, which allows flexibility and the ability to digitally reference the material at any point in time.
There are event planning courses for event planners at all levels: beginners, intermediates, and experts.
If you are a beginner, I recommend online event planning courses because it will introduce you to the industry (gotta get that lingo down!) and ensure you’re familiar with the planning processes.
If you are an experienced event planner, online event planning courses are the perfect way to scale your business and I recommend paying attention to the accounting, marketing and sales taught in the courses you’re considering.
Consider courses that offer testing and mentorship so you can assess your knowledge and discuss opportunities to grow your business and become a profitable event planner.
Don’t get fixated on becoming a “certified event planner” that you lose sight of the bigger picture and your goals. Focus on a program that teaches you how to run an event business in addition to being an event planner. The two are not the same and require different skills and knowledge.
How to Get Hired
Clients want to see your experience and proof that they can trust you to plan their event. They want to make sure you can seamlessly bring their visions to life.
Once you have taken the event planning course that best suits you, leverage that knowledge and put your skills to work!
I know firsthand how difficult it can be to get hired to plan events and showing a portfolio.
Volunteering is one of the most valuable opportunities to gain hands-on event experience. Not to mention, it’s a great opportunity to market yourself and inform the community about you and your services.
It doesn’t matter if it’s a local 5K or a neighborhood block party, offer to help, take pictures, bring business cards and network!
The more people you meet, the more people will know about your services.
Between the knowledge you gained from the event planning course and the hands-on experience you gained from volunteering…
Bring that information together in a clear and organized portfolio. A portfolio is a prime location to showcase your work and show clients what you do best.
whether you’re a new or experienced event planner, focus on learning new skills and improving the ones you already have.
If gaining an event planning certification gives you the confidence to take action and book events, then tap into a course that gives you a certificate.
Online event planning courses offer a practical, rewarding and valuable experience for event planners at any level because they’re flexible.
Whether you need to learn about the back-end business stuff, you need an introduction to event planning , or you have 5+ years of experience and need mentoring, there is an event planning course to help you.
Now I want to hear from you in the comments below…
Do think having an event planning certification is important? Why or why now? Let me know in the comments below…