March 13, 2012
So you’d think that after all these years, everyone would know what a meeting/conference/event planner does for a living. NOT!
Here’s what I found on Wikipedia:
“Event planning is the process of planning a festival, ceremony, competition, party, or convention. Event planning includes budgeting, establishing dates and alternate dates, selecting and reserving the event site, acquiring permits and coordinating transportation and parking.
“Event planning also includes some or all of the following, depending on the event: developing a theme or motif for the event, arranging for speakers and alternate speakers, coordinating location support (such as electricity and other utilities), arranging decor, tables, chairs, tents, event support and security, catering, police, fire, portable toilets, parking, signage, emergency plans, health care professionals, and cleanup.”
Later on, the entry declares that “event planning is a relatively new career field.”
I take exception to this phrase. I would suspect it’s been around since humans began to gather.
Who do you think organized the trade fairs in Byzantine times? Someone had to collect revenues; determine where stalls went; etc. Think about chariot races – someone had to organize them!
In 1996, Human Resources Development Canada created a line item that recognized meeting professionals.
We are gaining ground. It has taken a very long time.
To all you accidental planners out there, I salute you and suggest you keep on telling people what you do is important and has cause and effect; makes money; develops communities; creates jobs and makes great use of so many professions from hospitality to decor designers to audiovisual professionals.
We are the glue that holds all the moving parts together and communicates to all to ensure success. Say thanks to the meeting/conference/event/accidental planners you know!