The 6 Event Planning Skills You Need to Succeed

event planning

In 2020, 95% of B2B marketers said that meetings have a huge impact on meeting goals. 

This is just one of the reasons that meeting and event planning is a huge and necessary industry in the USA. Responsible for important events such as corporate meetings and weddings, event planners can sometimes have a huge amount of pressure on them — but it’s all worth it when they see the end result and the difference they’ve made.

Are you thinking about becoming an event planner? You should be aware of the skills you need to succeed at the job.

If you can master these, you’ll be a great event planner.

1. Communication

The most obvious should come first. Communication.

One of the most event planning skills, communication with clients and with anyone involved in making the event come to life is critical. You need to have the ability to sit down with a client and find out everything they want to make their event special.

Some clients may be very forthcoming and tell you everything they need — to the point where every little detail might be impossible to achieve! Your communication skills will come in handy there too, as sometimes you need to temper expectations.

Other times, they will be reluctant to specify too much and may be shyer. It’s important to draw out of them exactly what they want so you can make sure they aren’t let down by the final result.

You also will often have to pass on these expectations to the venue, caterer, and other people involved in planning the event. Things often get lost in translation in any industry, so you need to have the ability to be as clear as possible while still remaining both concise and warm. 

2. Organizational Skills

If you’re the kind of person who considers themselves a little scatter-brained, event planning may not be for you! At the very least, it’s a trait you’ll have to work on.

Almost a quarter of Americans, for example, pay their bills late because they can’t find them. That’s a lot of disorganized people, and some of them may end up as your clients!

You need to be organized enough for everyone. After all, clients come to you because they can’t quite organize this themselves.

After planning your first couple of events, you should have a system in place that helps you. Find a specific way to store files, take notes, and keep track of what still needs to be done.

Different things work for different people, but you need to know what helps you get the job done. 

3. Adaptability

Unfortunately, working in event planning can be a challenge at times. It’s a rewarding career, but parts will be an uphill battle — for example, your client changing their mind on something last-minute, or a venue falling through.

You need to be adaptable and able to think on your feet. If your client suddenly hates something or you need to find a backup caterer, you should be able to do this without panicking.

Adaptability and quick-thinking in a crisis are skills essential to event planning. If you don’t yet have them, it’s time to work on them. 

4. Creativity

Although a client may come to you full of ideas that they just want you to execute, you should be prepared to make suggestions and have your own input. Sometimes, someone will come to you with no real idea of what they want, and that’ll require you to do a lot of work!

Creativity is a big part of event planning. Even if the client has their own ideas, you should be able to suggest ways to make the event more special — particularly if you plan on specializing in weddings or social events rather than corporate.

Those are more likely to need a creative flair!

The good news is, the more events you do, the easier it’ll become to think of fresh and exciting ideas for each event, as you can draw inspiration from the others. Until then, browse and attend other events of the same nature. 

5. Leadership

As an event planner, you are expected to take something of a leadership role. You’ll be the one taking the clients’ ideas and translating them into something tangible by contacting everyone to make the event come together.

This doesn’t mean you have to be a huge extrovert or someone who thrives on social attention. Introverts can be great leaders too, as long as they’re willing to take charge.

You’ll also likely be expected to take charge when something goes wrong and should be prepared for that. 

6. Problem-Solving

Speaking of things going wrong — problem-solving is a huge part of being an event planner.

Here are just some of the things that can go wrong:

  • Someone is sick, and the date needs to be moved
  • The venue can no longer host the event
  • The caterer, entertainment, or something else falls through at the last minute

You’ll be expected to have fast answers. Can you do without this specific thing, or do you need to find a replacement? Where do you get one?

Event Planning Is Almost a Lifestyle

Event planning is one of the most rewarding careers out there. You can make people truly happy by giving them the event of their dreams, and if organization and creativity are your strong points and passions, you’ll truly love doing it.

However, you do need to work on these skills to be good at the job. If you can master them all, you’ll be the best event planner in town.

For event planning in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, contact us today! 

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