Meeting and Convention Planners Career Video
Description: Coordinate activities of staff, convention personnel, or clients to make arrangements for group meetings, events, or conventions.
Greeting international conference attendees… keeping presentations on time… or crawling under a table to plug in a projector. From glamour to grit— meeting, convention, and event planners coordinate all aspects of events to ensure a quality experience. These planners arrange meeting locations, transportation, and other details. They often start by meeting with clients to define the purpose of the event, schedule, preferred location, and the number of expected attendees and budget. It’s their job to obtain bids at competitive prices, and, at the event, ensure details run smoothly. They may also organize speakers, entertainment, and related activities. These planners work for professional associations, convention centers and hotels, in government agencies and corporations, or may specialize in planning weddings or fundraising events for non-profits. Their fast-paced work environment requires keeping calm and making quick decisions. Resourcefulness and good communication are key. Most planners work full time, with many additional hours just before and during events to keep things running smoothly. Applicants usually need a bachelor's degree; a major in tourism management, hospitality, or meeting and event planning is a plus. Some work experience— at a hotel, convention center, or planning events— may be needed. Professional certifications may improve job prospects.