In 2020, I celebrated my 10-year anniversary (but who’s counting) of being in the events industry. This number can be extended a bit, if you consider my early start in school, but I tend to latch on to 2010 due to the country’s economic recession. I landed my first job as a conference services coordinator, and I haven’t turned back since. Over these years, I have learned many lessons while in the trenches of different sides of the meeting planning and event management industry.

Before I dive in, I think it’s important to highlight that a career in event planning can be stressful. It has consistently ranked in the top ten most stressful jobs in the U.S. A harsh reality. Also you’ll spend a good portion of time explaining the value in what you do because it’s often misunderstood by others.

Even with all that in mind, event planning is an incredibly rewarding profession! You have the ability to bring people together and to create memories that can last a lifetime. There is joy in seeing the end-result after all the hard work is done. As you grow and hone your skills, you’ll begin to reflect and redefine who you are as a planner.

Below are the top ten lessons that event planning has taught me:

  1. The industry is very broad. You can learn many things, but you won’t have the capacity to do it all. Become a master of your niche.
  2. Post conferences (cons) and case studies are your best friends. Learn from them.
  3. Do not start planning without clear goals outlined or the invoice being paid. Protect your genius.
  4. The details matter. Cliché I know, but they just do.
  5. Expect to make mistakes but always look for solutions.
  6. You must develop a passion for serving others.
  7. Learn how to create space mentally and physically to allow your ideas and concepts to thrive.
  8. You cannot do it alone. Build and lean on meaningful relationships.
  9. Celebrate your successes, no matter how small or big. Every step is necessary on your journey.
  10. Be kind to others. Your reputation will follow you wherever you go.
Do not compare your journey to someone's else. It's a disservice to your own uniqueness.

Also, see #1 again. Any lessons would you add?

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