Event planner, event designer, event coordinator.  The terms are often used interchangeably but they don’t really mean the same thing.  The biggest difference is between event planners and event designers. While an event designer works on the decor elements of an event, an event planner is responsible for the entire event.  An event planner may hire an event designer but designers seldom hire event planners.


Maybe you work as an event planner already.  Perhaps you work for someone else that does event planning.  Or – just maybe – your big goal for 2020 is to operate your own event planning business.  




  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills are an absolute must.  And of those skills, the ability to listen is at the top of the list.  Most conflict in personal and professional life is the result of miscommunication.


  • Event Planning is not a nine-to-five job and many events take place in the evening and/or on weekends.  Successful event planners are hard-working and thrive in fast-paced environments.


  • The ability to juggle more than one aspect of the business at a time is paramount.  There are a lot of moving parts in being an event planner and you must be able to orchestrate people and things without falling apart.


  • Although many event planner websites say that a successful planner has to be an extrovert, that is not necessarily the case.  Many lucrative businesses are owned and operated by introverts. Well-honed listening and people-reading skills provide introverts with advantages over some extroverts.


  • Above all else, this business requires planners to be enthusiastic and instill a sense of confidence in their customers.




  • Meet with clients to discuss the details of the event.  Once the details are finalized, have your contract signed and arrange for a down payment.


  • Find a suitable venue such as a hall, restaurant, art gallery, or park.


  • Contact reputable vendors such as caterers, bakers, photographers, limo service, florists, and entertainment.


  • Maintain regular contact with clients about the details of the event unless your customers have stated they don’t want to be involved on a day-to-day basis.


  • Particularly if an event is going to take place outdoors, have a Plan B in place.


  • Check.  Double-check. And check again to ensure that everything and everyone is in place.


  • Work your butt off the day – or evening – of the event.


  • Go home, get a good night’s sleep and start over with new clients.




  • To gain experience, consider volunteering or working for another event planner.  If you have what it takes to be successful in this field, look into Event Planner Certification courses.


What valuable skills do you have?  We’d love to hear from you.


From everyone at IWED (Institute of Wedding and Event Design), we wish you the very best for an amazing 2020!  https://iwedglobal.com/