How to avoid event planning nightmares
Events make the modern world go round. Corporate awards ceremonies, annual parties, charity fundraising events, concerts, school fetes, weddings, political rallies, sports events, product launches, exhibitions and conferences all need someone to organise them. Bars don’t just pop up out of nowhere, performers don’t turn up randomly and play for free, food doesn’t materialise out of thin air. At large events, professional management companies organise every facet and ensure it all goes smoothly. The bigger the event, the higher the event planning fee and the more experience the planners have.
Going down the scale a little, you get corporate hospitality managers and the like whose job it is to raise the rafters every time there is a party, function or product promotion. Likewise professional charity fundraisers who organise give-a-thons for their causes.
Then there are those who have event management thrust upon them. Who’s going to organise the office party this year? The big bike race is coming through town, let’s put on a show! We can’t afford a wedding planner, but Julie will do it for us, won’t you Julie?
You can’t just wing it with events. So much can go wrong and there is every likelihood that it will, without a hefty dose of event planning know-how. Event planning nightmares can include giving out wrong name badges, a QR code pointing at an unrelated web address, last-minute venue cancellations, health & safety oversights leading to evacuations, speakers not turning up, sound problems, bad weather, props that are too large to ship, uninvited guests, inappropriate venue size, bad coffee that makes everyone grimace, and moany people.
For those seeking to enter the event planning profession or to improve their existing skills, a good place to start is a professional certification, which can be had for around $600. For extra speed and for those unable or unwilling to travel to a training venue, there are online-only courses. QC Event School is one school offering online courses in event and wedding planning that lead to a professional certification, along with specialised courses for areas like luxury wedding and event planning, destination wedding planning, and how to start, run and grow your own event planning business.
QC’s courses are self-paced and have payment plans. They teach basics of good event management, plus tips and tricks from experienced event industry professionals from the Unites States. Tutors include event management company owners, wedding planning professionals, and non-profit, corporate, sports and educational event planners.
QC Event School is run by Candice Coppola, who owns and runs Jubilee Events, an event design and planning boutique based in Connecticut.
A shorter online course on planning events like a pro is IOA's Event and Hospitality Management.