As Leonard Bernstein famously said,
“To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan and not quite enough time.”
If you work in the event planning industry, these words may ring all too true! Or perhaps you’re not in the business yet, but have always been interested. In that case, you’ll need to be ready for a fast-paced, ever-changing, competitive world where you’ll often be racing against the clock to pull off a Royal Opera House occasion with a school play budget.
Good event planners are organised yet flexible, creative yet budget-minded, and great at interacting with people and staying on top of a million things at once.
Does this sound like you? Then a career in the event planning industry may just be for you! To help you figure out where you might like to go, we’ve collected 50 event planning jobs that people actually do – like in real life. Check it out, and you may be surprised at just how much stuff there is out there!
1- Event manager
These are the people who organise and run the events. They’re in charge, so they get the credit when things go right, but the blame may also fall to them if it doesn’t!
2- Convention planner
If your specialty lies in getting together groups of people united by a similar job or interest, then you may enjoy planning conventions, from choosing the locations to figuring out the logistics of getting all your attendees to the convention to picking out activities.
3- Office event planner
Have a lot of experience working in an office environment or in a particular professional sector? Then you may be the perfect person to help firms and businesses plan their professional events.
4- Meeting planner
You’ll have to figure out what your clients want out of the meeting, and how you can arrange the ideal one so that they come out of it with a productive meeting.
5- Theme development
Many events have a special theme to help them stand out. If you have an eye for those, then you can help people choose a one and figure out how to develop a consistent plan for it to extend to all aspects of the event.
6- Event coordinator
As the coordinator, you’ll be in charge of making sure that everything goes according to schedule. Are you ready to get into the nitty-gritty of an event? Then this role may be a good fit for you.
7- Party planner
There are all kinds of people who love to host parties but need the help of a professional to pull it off, often simply for time purposes. Are you the life of the party?
8- Fundraiser planner
There are so many good causes out there working to get their name heard, and fundraiser planners can lend a big hand here. They also plan special events for the fundraiser, such as a night to thank donors.
9- Exhibition coordinator
How would you like to help museums arrange art exhibitions? That’s one of the things you could be doing as an exhibition coordinator, which means you’ll pick the schedule, the costs, and so on to put the whole thing together.
10- Job fair planner
There are all sorts of job fairs held, including lots for students or young professionals. Why not help organise these events and help people find their dream jobs?
11- Legal events planner and manager
Organising professional events can be tricky, particularly in settings that have something to do with the law. As a legal event planner, you could arrange anything from a launch party to a conference dinner to an annual holiday gathering.
12- Event operations manager
You’ll take the lead of all the operations for an event and ensure that all budgets are under control. You’ll also need to know how to build close relationships and lead a team.
13- Student event planner
Universities offer lots of chances for event planners to work. You could help arrange student events, such as welcome week activities or even special trips for exchange students.
14- Resort activities director
Any top-notch resort also has a top-notch offering of activities for their guests. Would you like to be the person who arranges those?
15- Events for recreation, parks, and tourism administration
If you spend all your spare time in the great outdoors, then you might like working in helping parks & rec. departments plan their events. You’ll need specialised knowledge, but there are lots of opportunities here if you are willing to take them.
16- Themed party planner
Don’t you just love it when parties have a great theme? Specialise and become a party planner who puts on the very best theme parties in town.
17- Fashion show coordinator
If you adore the fashion world, then you could make it as a fashion show coordinator. Like many aspects of the fashion industry, competition can be cutthroat — but creativity and dedication can help you to stand out.
18- Community market manager
You can arrange markets and market-related events in your local community, which can help you make a real difference right where you live. It’s not as glamorous as fancy party planning, but it can be extremely rewarding.
19- Volunteer coordinator
Volunteers are often an essential part of an event, and there needs to be somebody in charge to make sure that things go according to plan.
20- Corporate team building events
Companies are always looking for ways to get their team involved, and there are event planners who focus on putting together fun team building events to help people let loose and relax – but professionally.
21- Director of special events for a restaurant or hotel
Hotels and restaurants are popular locations for special events, either hosted by them or by a third party who wants to use their space for their own event, so they often have somebody who is in charge of running these events.
22- Music festival coordinator
This is a dream job for lots of people, but it comes with a lot of pressure and stress, too! For music lovers, the stress is worth getting to work in such an exciting field.
23- Tournament director
Are you more into sports than music? Then how about organising special events and tournaments for sports teams?
24- Small party planner
Not every event is a massive one – and in fact, many aren’t. Today, people hire event planners to plan their kids’ birthday parties, dinner parties, and special ceremonies. You’ll work with all the same things as you would for big events, just on a smaller scale, so the details need to be perfect.
25- Civic or government events planner
This is another quite specific type of event, which means you can exploit a niche here. If you’re familiar with local government, they may just have an event planning job for you.
26- Bar/Bat Mitzvah planner or quinceañera planner
If you have the cultural knowledge to plan these events, you could have a fantastic niche. Families often spend huge amounts of money celebrating their children’s passage into adulthood, and they want the perfect parties for their not-so-little ones.
27- Entertainment selector
Some people love being the ones who get to pick the fun stuff that happens at events – and some people are lucky enough to have picking fun stuff be their full-time job! Of course, it’s not quite as simple as that and a lot of hard work goes into it, too.
28- Wedding Planner
Made famous by the Jennifer Lopez movie of the same name and various reality TV shows, these type of planners have found fame in pop culture for good reason. These professionals specialise exclusively on weddings because these ceremonies require A LOT. After all, organising someone’s “most important day” is no small matter.
29- Event analyst
Are you good with data and strategies? You may enjoy working to analyse events to see how they went – and offer tips for how they can go even better next time.
30- Event marketing coordinator
This role mixes a bit of marketing and event planning, so you’ll get to use a range of skill sets to arrange the perfect event and get the word out there about it.
31- Field events manager
Would you like to really get your hands stuck in and be really involved? Then consider being a field events manager, where you’ll do lots of on-site work to pull off the perfect event.
32- Nonprofit program manager
Though this isn’t strictly event planning only, you’ll get to use a lot of the same skills to ensure that your nonprofit’s actions are actually in line with the goals, as well as work on activities and planning them with your team.
33- Donor relations
This position is often open at universities or educational institutions, and you’ll do exactly what it says – manage the relationships between the institution and its donors. Event planning and sharp customer relation skills are key here.
34- Restaurant and catering operations
Running restaurant operations isn’t exactly like event planning, but it certainly has a lot in common! You’ll need to keep things going smoothly on a daily basis and make sure everybody is doing there part.
35- Tourism project coordinator
Again, this isn’t 100% event planning, but it will come into play a lot in your day-to-day duties on the job while you promote a certain destination and ensure that visitors see the very best parts there.
36- Resorts operations manager
You’ll coordinate staff, lodging arrangements, food and drinks, and make sure all your guests are happy. Yep, that sounds pretty similar to running an event to us!
37- Campaign coordinator
No matter what sort of campaign is being run, somebody needs to be the person to pull it all together and ensure that all the parts are working as they should so the campaign runs smoothly.
38- Alumni relations at a university
This one is similar to donor relations, and they can often overlap and be part of the same department. An alumni relations job has a bit more of a wider range though, and you’ll also work with helping graduates get connected with each other for work opportunities, attend events related to the university, and more.
39- Photo shoot coordinator
If you have a creative eye, then you can help photographers and creative teams pull together their photo shoots. Think of the shoot as an event, and you can have a lot of fun here.
40- Scout for locations
Are you really good and finding the perfect venue or location? Then you could use this to sidestep into finding them exclusively – whether that’s for professional events or even filming.
This is another one where you can use your event planning resourcefulness in another industry. Fixers arrange everything so it goes smoothly for a filming crew in a destination they aren’t familiar with, including finding accommodation and transportation, locations, and dealing with permits.
Are you a seasoned pro at event planning? Then you can start a consulting business helping people pull of the events they want to. Whether you teach people how to become event planners or help an existing team work through issues, there’s lots of space for consulting here.
You’ll work as the middleman (or woman) between the event planners and the people they need to hire, so your job could be anything for finding the perfect speaker for the closing notes to finding a band for a big bash.
44- PR for an event planning firm
If you’re good at people skills and you like writing, then you could work for an event planning firm in their public relations department and do things like sending out press releases, spreading the word about an event, and helping to find sponsors.
45- Account executive
Another role you might like if you’re really good at working with people is to work as an account executive, where your focus will be clients’ needs for their events and promoting your business in addition to helping with event planning.
46- Private tour organiser
If you love to travel, mix travel and event planning by helping people put together their trips to foreign countries. You’ll need to have good local knowledge of the destination or be in touch with somebody who does have it.
47- Logistics planner
Is your favourite part of event helping the schedule move along slowly and getting the people from one place to another successfully? Then you could use your strategising skills to become a logistics planner.
48- Client relations
Is your favourite part of the event planning job getting to interact with clients? Then you could focus entirely on managing the company-client relationship.
49- Event representative
Similar to client relations, this job requires being great with people. You can represent a brand and help them represent themselves at different sorts of events, as well as promote themselves.
50- Destination management company (DMC)
Are you a real expert in your hometown or city? Then you can start a company in this tourism-type job based on your tip-top knowledge – including planning lots of fun events and knowing all about the hottest accommodation and dining options.
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