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Event Manager FAQs

Who is a freelance event manager?

An event manager is a person that’s in charge of the design, setup, and execution of events that bring various people together. These professionals ensure that everything runs smoothly, regardless of how big the group is, the nature of the event, location, etc.

A freelance event manager isn’t affiliated with any specific company or client. They scout and work for different clients, handling different projects, and can work at any location. 

A freelance event manager isn’t affiliated with any specific company or client. They scout and work for different clients, handling different projects, and can work at any location.

What are the benefits of being a freelance event manager? 

Being a freelance event manager has its own perks such as: 

  • The freedom to make all the decisions and expand your creativity
  • You get to work at your own time
  • Decide your own rates and clients to work with
  • Work on many different events 

How do you find work as a freelance event manager?

Some of the tactics used by seasoned freelance event managers are:

  • Observing other event planners - this is definitely the easiest way to learn how the job is done and all the trade secrets. Try to create a list of industry leaders and influencers that you can learn from. You can also follow them on social media platforms such as LinkedIn to remain up to date with all the current trends. 
  • Start in your local area - charity begins at home and as a freelance event manager, you ought to get the necessary experience by taking part in organizing events in your local area. Even though some of them might not pay, it would be worth it as you get to add it to your CV and gain lots of experience working with different people and on different events. Some of the places to look out for are those organizing parties, church events, charities, etc. 
  • Begin with small events - it’s always best to start small and then build from there. Do not go directly for the ‘big’ events as you may find yourself lacking some skillset, ultimately ending your career prematurely. Start small, as it will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Specialize in a niche - there’s a lot of competition in this industry, so it’s a good idea to pick a niche that you can establish authority in. Once you are known as a specialized event manager, it will be much easier to land more gigs as people would perceive you to be more experienced in that particular area.
  • Market your brand - as a freelancer, you’re your own marketer. Look for ways to market your brand either through the word of mouth, having a personal website, and an active social media account.

What is the difference between an event manager and an event planner?

An event manager and an event planner are two very different people, yet many people tend to confuse between the two. On one hand, event planning is the creative and pre-event process. 

The planner is the person who manages all the activities prior to the actual event. Whether you are deciding on colors or caterers for your wedding or birthday party, the event planner is your go-to person. Some of the areas that event planners work with you on are:

  • Choosing an event venue
  • Identifying the right themes to use
  • Creating table layouts 

Essentially, your event planner is creating the experience of the event and assuring a solid framework to follow once the event starts. 

As the name suggests, an event manager actually manages the event; this is the more practical and same-day side of event design. Event managers are mostly in charge of things such as:

  • Same-day event logistics
  • Making sure vendors are up and running on time
  • Keeps track of clock for different scheduling needs
  • Helps with parking logistics and emergency default plans for the event
  • Works and manages the staff hired for the event like wait staff, cooks, entertainment
  • Ensures any conflicts at the event are resolved.

In most cases, an event manager works for the particular site of your event, where they are employed and directed. Therefore, although you can discuss issues with the manager, they cannot always be told what to do.

How does one become a freelance event manager?

 Becoming an event manager is simple but being one can be an overwhelming task. This is because it can be quite draining, requiring you to liaise with a myriad of people. However, this can be a fulfilling career if you possess qualities and skills such as:

To become a successful event manager, some of the skills that you’ll need include: 

  • Detail-Oriented
  • You have an eye for design
  • Engaging Personality
  • Solutions-Oriented
  • Resilient
  • Good Communicator and negotiator

What are the educational requirements to become a freelance event manager?

Event managers are typically required to have a bachelor’s degree at the very least. However, you may not find a college that offers event management as a standalone course. Therefore, you may gain more knowledge studying related courses such as hospitality, business management, or communications. 

To stand out from the rest, professional event managers have received additional education by taking online courses that provide certifications in event planning and management. The International Institute of Event Management is one of the websites that can take you through the nitty-gritty of becoming a competent freelance event manager. 

What are the stages of the event management process?

There are five basic stages of event management. They include: 

Stage 1: Viability assessment

This is the first point of contact for the freelance event manager and the client. At this stage, they’d want to understand what the client’s goals are and how they would offer their services to them. Since each event is unique, the event manager will conduct a viability assessment, trying to decipher whether the client’s goals are doable, in line with the available resources. 

The main things that will be considered at this stage are the location or venue of the event and whether the expected number of guests will comfortably fit in. Furthermore, the event manager collaborates with the client to determine the necessary equipment and other requirements needed to make the event a success. 

Stage 2: Choice of theme 

After understanding the client’s needs, the freelance event manager goes ahead to design the event and create a viable theme, to meet the desired objectives. This is where the rough sketch of the event comes into focus. 

  • What will occur during the event?
  • What’s the planned layout of tables, chairs, stages, podiums, etc.?  
  • What’s the planned style of the setting?

Stage 3: Focusing on the details 

Once the event manager and their team settle on a vision for the event, they now look at the finer details. This stage comprises the bulk of the event management process and may include activities such as: 

  • Hiring venues
  • Design post-event surveys.
  • Sending guest invites.
  • Tracking RSVPs and event registration numbers.
  • Discussing the event schedule with speakers and performers.
  • Designing and finalizing event documents such as the timelines.
  • Designing the event check-in process and creating signage.

Stage 4: Event execution

This is the main task for any event manager. All the preparations that have thus been made so far come into life. 

Stage 5: Post-event analysis

Exceptional freelance event managers don’t consider an event over until they understand how guests, clients, and team members responded to the event. During the event, they will scout and see the guest reactions and interviewing attendees to get their opinions on how the event was. 

After that, they’ll send out a post-event survey in which to get the most responses they keep them short, simple, and friendly. With the responses in hand, event managers meet with clients to discuss their satisfaction with the outcomes of the event and the survey results.