Recently I participated in a Q&A at a local college for a group of event coordinator hospitality students. They’re hoping to secure event coordinating jobs and eventually move their way up once they graduate. I always enjoy this part of the industry and giving back. I love sharing my experiences and providing the opportunity for the students to ask whatever they want in a no judgement zone. This time around it seemed like a lot of the questions were geared around the various positions available in the event planning world.
Event Coordinators, Meeting Planners, Event Managers, Oh My!
On this occasion, I got a lot of the regular questions like how to become an event planner and what is the average event planner salary. But I also fielded questions like what’s the difference between an event planner and a meeting planner. And what does an event coordinator do in comparison to an event planner. Questions about who does what and what are their responsibilities. Lots of the students are trying to figure out what industry direction they want to go in. And where to find event coordinator jobs. After a most enjoyable afternoon with these potential industry professionals, it made me think what a perfect subject for a blog.
From Event Coordinator to Event Manager or from Soup to Nuts
When it comes to planning events, no matter the title all positions have a hand in the success.
Event Planners take a client’s concept, vision and ideas and ensure that they’re fulfilled as planned. They understand and recognize the big picture and the elements needed to make the event successful. The event planner not only helps to create the experience but will also source, negotiate and decide on the details and services of the event. An Event Planner is with you from start to finish. They choreograph all the elements, design and administer the budget, oversee the vendors, create the event blueprint and timeline along with a load of others details.
Event Coordinators are responsible to ensure the event is executed as planned. They take all the details essential to the success of the event and implement them. Securing the right set-up, keeping track of the timeline, overseeing vendors and service companies and ensuring everything is where it’s supposed to be. Pulling every single element, detail and service together resulting in a perfect event. And in the role of fixer an event coordinator is the best. Ensuring any last minute snafus and items missing in action are in place faster than you can say “start the event”.
Meeting Planners are responsible amongst other things for the substance and content of a meeting. They are also in charge of bringing together that very important team responsible for executing meetings, special events or conventions. They ensure all team members are in place, knowledgeable and up-to-date. A meeting planner’s responsibilities are similar to those of an event manager. Their most essential job is to ensure the meeting, event or convention runs perfectly. They’re in charge of everything from location to invites, venues to transportation, service companies to speakers and everything else in between. Ensuring every single detail has been covered.