27 Jul 11 Things You Didn’t Know About Event Planning
It seems like everyone’s into event planning these days. Or at least thinks that’s what they do. That neighbor who celebrates his birthday? An event planner. The bar owner who hosts a dinner? An event planner. Your friend who invites you to a cowboy themed party? Also an event planner.
But those of us who are involved or work with event organizers feel differently about what event planning actually is. Organizing an event is much more than putting a party together. The general trend is that it is, though, and there are several myths surrounding the job description. Some of these myths define event organizing as something that simply requires having an artistic flair. A creative gift. Or like Jennifer Lopez in that wedding movie. Running around with a walkie talkie making sure everything gets done. And loud applause at the end.
When assisting an event, most people focus on noticing the flashy decorations, the delicious catering, or the workflow running smoothly and seamlessly. At a well planned and delivered event, guests perceive these elements as fitting snuggly into place. So of course, they assume that organizing events must be the same: a piece of cake.
(Insert chuckle here).
Nothing could be further from the truth.
In an attempt to shed light on the reality of the job, I asked several colleagues of mine to share unseen, unnoticed facts about their profession. Their secrets. That which they wish others knew about what they do. Hopefully, after sharing what they told me, I can underscore the value of all their hard work. Because believe me, they deserve constant high fives.
- Secret # 1: A person who organizes events has to be OK with nagging people during the planning, creation, and execution of the event to make sure everything goes as planned.
- Secret # 2: She also has to accept that most of the times things don’t go as planned. No taking anything for granted. Anything can change and she’ll probably have a trick or two up her sleeve just in case.
- Secret # 3: If something changes, she’ll have to deal with it before anyone notices. She’s an expert at camouflaging.
- Secret # 4: An event organizer is always subject to the client’s wishes, even if she disagrees with the client or believes it’s not logistically possible. As a result, she’s constantly mediating between what the client wants and what she believes to be feasible.
- Secret # 5: She understands she can’t please everybody and doesn’t try to.
- Secret # 6: She knows that lack of recognition means everything is going well. If the clients don’t say anything during the event, it’s a good sign.
- Secret # 7: She not only has artistic creativity but logistical prowess as well, especially when the budget is tight.
- Secret # 8: There are times that she’ll be competing against others without even knowing it. She’ll put in a lot of hours to turn a project in on time, only to find out that the client has chosen another event planning company.
- Secret # 9: It’s vocational. A person who organizes events does so because she’s passionate about it. Most people can’t handle the pressure and the emotional roller coaster – it’s a whirlwind of calm, stress, adrenaline, and reward. And it’s pretty addictive.
- Secret # 10: An event planner is a multitasker par excellence. She can do anything from sweeping to giving an impromptu presentation on the spot.
- Secret # 11: She understands how much she depends on others for everything and knows she has to be OK with that. Nothing gets done without including all the other pieces of the puzzle.Now that I’m more aware of what goes on behind an event, I’m not surprised to find out that, according to Forbes, it’s one of the most stressful jobs out there. And extremely necessary.
Why? Because events build business. They help brands increase their sales, credibility, notoriety, and emotional impact on their customers. Sure, they’re a lot of work, but well done, are ridiculously worth it.