The Delegate Wranglers® DW®

How can you kick start your events management career during a downturn?

These 4 practical steps can be completed while you are working from home, studying at home or self-isolating:

Step 1: Raise Your Profile
It is now more important than ever to build connections and raise your profile online as networking events are cancelled, large industry shows are postponed and local networking groups are put on hold for the time being.

– Be present on LinkedIn. Make sure your profile is up to date and use the most relevant hashtags and keywords. Then look at who is viewing your profile. On the free account, you can see 4-5 of most recent people who have viewed your profile. Follow up with these people via LinkedIn messaging and introduce yourself. Join some of the relevant event management groups on LinkedIn where members share industry news, insights and job opportunities.

– Start a blog about the events industry. Maybe start with how Corona virus has affected you because that is a topical subject right now. Use your blog to showcase events you have organised in the past either in a paid or voluntary capacity with photos of the events, provide client or attendee testimonials and case studies. WordPress.com is a free blog site.

– Go through all your social media profiles and remove any inappropriate or potentially embarrassing content as potential employers often check social media as part of their recruitment process. Alternatively, make sure your profiles are private and only accessible to friends and family and consider running separate profiles for work purposes.

Step 2: Update your CV
Spend time on creating a fabulous CV that you can use when you start job hunting.

– Be unique in your covering email/application: Emphasise the most impressive and relevant events management skills. This could be your attention to detail, ability to work to tight deadlines or the ability to manage complex budgets which are all relevant to events management.

- Find your Unique Selling Point (USP): What is unique about you in relation to events management? Include this in your covering email. Do you have a blog where you have showcased your events work? Have your organised fund-raising charity events? Do you have a high number of followers on your Instagram account where you are talking about the events you follow? What makes you stand out in the events management world?

Step 3: Decide what type of event work is right for you
If you have some spare time on your hands, you should use it to think clearly about what you type of event work you want to go into. Do some research, follow interesting organisations and event management companies on social media. See what types of events excite and inspire you and make you want to find out more.

Step 4: Plan how to get events experience when the lockdown is over.
Most job applications ask for at least 1-2 years events experience but how do you get this when just starting out? The key is to be proactive so you’re in the best possible position when life finally gets back to normal.

– Organise and host your own event. This could be a charity fundraising event for a chosen charity, a meet up, a cake sale, a fun run or a garage sale. How about an outdoor cinema night, your friend’s hen party or a wedding for a relative? Run an event for friends and family such as a pop-up cake stall, street party, film night, dinners. They all count as events experience and potential employers will respect you for trying really hard in difficult circumstances. When including the details on your CV or cover email or job application, focus on the event management aspects of these events such as managing the budget or finding an unusual supplier or overcoming any difficulties that arose on the actual day of the event.

– Consider volunteering at a charity, not-for-profit or social enterprise. These types of organisations often hold events but do not have the funds to pay for an Events Manager. National charities such as Oxfam or local based charities such as ACT in Cambridge all organise events which you could offer to assist with. Community organisations such as the local Scouts also organise events that you could help with. Any event experience is excellent for your cv and doesn’t matter if it was unpaid or volunteer work.

– Look for an internship or secure work experience. Draw up a list of event management agencies near to where you are based that you could contact in the future to ask for work experience and/or job opportunities.

You can contact Samantha here for more info:
"Get Ahead in Events" Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/GetAheadinEventswithSamanthaSalisbury/
Jonsam Events: www.jonsamevents.co.uk
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/samantha-salisbury-0309461/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jonsamevents/