Meeting, Convention and Event PlannersMeeting, Convention, and Event Planners salary statistic

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Meeting, Convention and Event Planners

Event planners have a tough job, even though the position often seems glamorous. They have responsibility for planning and executing all types of meetings, conferences, conventions, fundraisers, weddings, etc. This means they work with many demanding clients and many long hours.

An event planner salary can vary quite widely, because there are so many different types of organizations they may work for, or, in the case of many, they are self-employed outside contractors. A corporate event planner salary, for example, for large corporations such as Coca-Cola will be at the high end of the scale, while that for a non-profit organization may be considerably lower. The average event planner salary is right around $45,000.

Typical Job Responsibilities of an Event Planner

  • Design and coordinate events from start to finish, no matter how large or small.
  • Meet with the hosts of the events (clients or bosses) to determine venue options, budget, numbers of guests, menus, etc.
  • Coordinate with outside businesses and agencies, such as venues, caterers, florists, musicians, photographers, etc.
  • Prepare and distribute press releases in the case of newsworthy events
  • Oversee all preparation for the event
  • Be present at the event to ensure that everything runs smoothly
  • Be responsible for receiving invoices and seeing that they are presented and paid
  • Stay within the planned budget

This job obviously is quite varied. Planning a luncheon, for example, will not require the amount of planning and organization that a large corporate gala or a huge wedding will. Make no mistake about it, however. The hours are long and include many weekends and late nights. For this reason, the average salary of an event planner with a good reputation and/or valued by his/her employer will be higher than peers with the same amount of education and training in many other fields.

Three Types of Work

Event planners may work in three separate types of environments.

  1. They may work for a corporation or a non-profit organization. In these instances, the salary of an event planner is fixed.
  2. They may work for convention/hotel venues themselves as a coordinator/planner for clients who choose to use that venue and its staff
  3. They may be self-employed in one or more specific types of event planning, such as weddings, bar mitzvahs, large private parties, etc. In this situation, an event planner’s salary may vary, especially with seasonal demands.

Educational Requirements

There are no specific educational requirements, though most event planners have at least an Associate’s degree in a related field, such as hospitality or hotel/motel management. Particularly for those who are self-employed, perhaps the best preparation is to work in the field under other planners to gain a full understanding of all that is involved.

Joining organizations and associations, such as the Convention Industry Council or Meeting Professionals International. Membership often adds more status and can mean higher salary for event planner employment.

As impersonal as this digital world may appear to be today, there will always be conventions, trade shows, corporate events, meetings, weddings, and other personal celebrations. The outlook for planners is quite good.

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