Gaining experience to get into the events industry is vital, its what will help you gain recognition but it will also help you develop the skills that are desirable to any future employer. In order to develop the skills, you need to recognise exactly what they are. Here’s a list of the key skills that I feel are paramount for any events manager:
– Leadership > This skill is vital when taking on a role as event manager. A manager needs to be able to take control and guide a team in order for everyone to know what needs to be done. A good leader would set deadlines for their team, be able to overcome problems effectively and efficiently if they arise, and be approachable so that the rest of the team are able to work within a relaxed environment and are not afraid to communicate with the manager.
– Organisation > An event will run a lot smoother if everything is planned and prepared for in advance of the event. Writing up a list of everything that needs to be done for the event and then setting frequent goals for what will be secured by such a date is essential. For example the first thing I do once I’ve decided what event I want to do, I always figure out the number of people I want to attend and then secure a suitable venue.
– Team Work & Communication > When the team dynamic is good, planning an event becomes a lot easier. Listening to others in the team allows for the best ideas to arise, hence the event itself will improve. This ties in with communication, as this skill is needed for every job. To be able to interact with any type of person will allow you to compromise with others and enable everyone to benefit from what you are trying to achieve. Also there is no way you are going to make contacts if you are unable to communicate with them.
– Attention to detail > As a self confessed perfectionist this skill is one of the most important to me. Every detail of the event counts, even if its something regarded of as little importance, because at the end of the day its all the little things that help contribute to the overall event in a big way.
– Budget awareness > Although the budgeting side of running an event is not exactly regarded as ‘fun’. It is important. It can be very easy to get carried away with ideas, do not get me wrong optimism is so important in this industry, but you need to find the difference between being optimistic and being unreasonable. Figure out how much money you need to spend on each aspect of the event, and stick to it. Theres no point in splashing out on a beautiful venue if you are unable to pay for the catering to match it.
– Perseverance > No event will succeed if you are not willing to stick with what they are trying to achieve. It is common in the event industry that there are knock-backs when planning any and every event so always have a plan B! How you deal with that knock-back is what distinguishes a good events manager to an excellent events manager. Keep that head cool, and do not allow the problem to get the better of you. If you have a backup plan or a willingness to adapt, then the transition should be smooth enough.
If you are committed and prepared to what you are trying to achieve, then there is no reason for it to fail.