Have you been thinking about making a career change to become an event planner? Now is a good time to do it! According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the event planner job outlook is expected to increase by 8% between 2019 and 2029. That’s at a rate much faster than average.
But, do you have what it takes to make your dream of becoming an event planner a reality?
We’ve got your back! Keep reading to learn more about how to become an event planner with no experience, as we go into detail about the steps you need to take to make this your new career.
Make Sure You Have a Realistic Idea of What to Expect
There’s often a misconception that event planning is throwing together parties that you get to attend. The reality, however, is much different.
Before you decide to make this your new career, you need to understand what it involves. While there are many fun perks of event planning, there are many more long days (and nights!) that require you to have a flexible schedule.
You’ll spend a lot of your time on your feet, and even when you attend an event, you won’t be able to fully relax, since you’re responsible if something unexpected happens.
To get a better idea of what it’s like, you might try to shadow an event planner for a day to learn more about what to expect. This way, you can decide if it’s a good fit for you.
Consider Getting Formal Education
Generally speaking, it will be much easier for you to get started in the world of event planning if you get yourself enrolled in event planning degree programs.
If you’re in a position where you have the time and money to go back to school it’s worth it to learn about the ins and outs of the industry and give you the foundation you need to start your new career path.
However, we know that going back to school is not always realistic. If you can’t get a degree in Event Management, then consider taking some certifications instead. You can start with more general certifications and then later take more specific ones as needed.
Taking certifications will not only give you helpful knowledge, but it will be attractive for companies looking to hire.
Choose Which Type of Event Planner to Be
There are so many different types of events that people want to host, which means there are event planning experts for each type as well. While you’re getting your education, take the time to learn more about the different event planning niches to see what most appeals to you.
For example, you may want to work in the corporate world, helping to plan conferences or business retreats. That requires a different skill set than planning social events like birthday parties or weddings. Likewise, planning non-profit events is another can of worms. Find out how event design changes based on different types of event planning as well to help you make your decision.
Once you decide on which type of events you want to plan, you can start to narrow your focus.
Learn Industry Tools
As you’re choosing your specialty, this is when you should also take the time to learn some of the most commonly used tools in the industry. F
Depending on the classes or certifications you take, examples of these tools may be covered, otherwise, you’ll need to do your own research.
Once you’ve started a strong foundation for your career by learning the industry and choosing a specialty, it’s time to get some experience under your belt. You can do this in a few different ways.
For example, you might offer to plan an upcoming event for a friend, family member, or colleague to get your feet wet. Or, you can look for an entry-level position with an event planning firm, where you can get real-world experience by learning from more experienced professionals.
You might also consider advertising your services in a freelance capacity, to help you gain more experience.
For many careers, your success is dependent on who you know, and in event planning, it pays to be connected. Attend local networking events to connect with other event planners as well as industry leaders in your area. You never know what might come out of these connections later down the line.
It’s also a good idea to look for an experienced event planner that can be your mentor as you’re getting started. Then, don’t forget to pay it forward in a few years once you’re established by becoming a mentor yourself!
Build Your Portfolio
Once you have a few jobs under your belt, it’s time to advertise it to the world. Create an online portfolio that you can share with potential companies if you’re looking for a full-time job at an in-house event planning agency. Or, if you decide to work exclusively as a freelancer, use your portfolio to help you get more clients.
Your portfolio should continue to evolve as you do, so be sure to update it with your latest work often so potential clients know what to expect when working with you.
That’s How to Become an Event Planner
After reading through our guide on how to become an event planner, you should have a better understanding of whether it’s a good career choice for you. Why wait any longer to get started on pursuing your dreams? The world of event planning is waiting for you!
Looking for more tips as you consider your career change? Browse through our business articles before you go.