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  Ask any event manager about the opportunities and challenges facing the events they oversee and the answers will be as varied as the events themselves. But ask them about being an event manager and the differences disappear. No matter the size or scope of the events they oversee, event managers share a number of common truths about the profession they love. Here are a few....   The learning never stops. Just when they think they’ve mastered everything, something new comes along that requires them to dive in and figure it out. Great event planners know that continuous learning keeps them fresh, challenged and frankly it’s what many love about the job. Every event is different and even those who have spent their entire career in the business continue to add to their know-how and experience.   Sometimes things won’t be perfect. But they will be good enough. Perfectionism can be a wonderful trait when it comes to managing events. It’s what everyone aims for. But every now and again things don’t work out quite as planned. A good event manager knows that sometimes “good enough” is ok. It often is the only way to think about a given situation to keep from over-stressing in the moment. The real key is figuring out how to fix it so next time it’s perfect.   The attendees/guests don’t see what is behind the scenes. This kind of follows the point above. Sometimes things behind the scenes are incredibly chaotic and it feels as though everything is falling apart. Good event planners remember that despite everything not quite living up to the perfect vision they had in mind, the attendees don’t know what was planned, can't see behind the scenes and can be perfectly happy with things just the way they are.   Decisions must be made to maximize the experience of the guests/attendees. Great event planners know that even the most fabulous idea that is executed to perfection won’t mean anything at all if it doesn’t address the needs or desires of the attendees. They are the life-blood of the event.   Just when they think they’ve seen it all… Ask any seasoned event planner if anything surprises them. Most will laugh. Just when they think they’ve run into the most outlandish request from a client someone tops it. Just when they think they’ve seen the craziest guest behavior, someone manages to outdo the crazy. It’s part of the fun of the business. Never a dull moment.   They know not to burn bridges. It’s a relatively small industry. Good event managers know they are likely to run into the same people at some point in the future. It’s never, ever a good idea to burn bridges. It doesn’t mean sticky situations don’t occur. They are just wise enough to know how often paths can cross again and work hard to always present themselves professionally, honestly and manage even the most difficult scenario with grace and civility.   Good supplier relationships are worth their weight in gold. Suppliers can rescue event managers in untold ways and in unimaginable situations. Those who foster great relationships with their suppliers will always fare better than those who choose the adversarial route.   Complacency is deadly. A great event manager knows that events evolve and grow and require constant tending to keep them relevant and successful. They know that complacency is like a disease that will slowly ravish the existence of even the biggest and the best events in the world. Refresh. Reinvent. Change.   They can push themselves harder than they think possible. Just when they think they’ve never worked longer hours or twisted themselves quite as far inside out to make a miracle happen, something comes along to push them even further. And they answer the call. Every time.   Change is inevitable. Great event manages know that the very essence of the industry is rooted in change. And they love it. Whether it’s a re-branding or a new technology or a market shift or a new client, change is around every corner. It’s what draws many to the industry.   Preparing for every contingency is great but… Good event planners know that all the planning in the world doesn’t mean something won’t happen they weren’t prepared for. The good news is that in preparing for everything else, they will find in themselves with the capacity and inspiration to figure out the newest challenge.   Arriving on site is the best! Planning is great. Arriving on site is better. No more time to weigh the options, to change plans or to imagine what might go wrong. Now decisions are made on the spot, results are seen immediately and the magic happens. The immediacy of it all is energizing.   A great team can make or break an event. All great event managers know that the most important assets they have are the people around them. Whether it’s staff or volunteers, a great team is priceless. They can make the most stressful situation easier, take on heroic efforts that inspire everyone and sometimes even make the day a little brighter by simply making a cup of coffee at just the right time. No great event planer does it alone.     Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Job seekers : Create a Free Account to get job alerts, post your resume and more! Employers : Post your event job today! Save time and money and reach a qualified audience.
  You leave your job interview more excited than ever about the opportunity. And you’re confident you have a shot.   What you do next is critical.   You can sit back and wait for a call. Or you can take a few minutes to up your chances of getting an offer.   It’s as easy as sending thank you note to your interviewer right away.   You might not think this is important. And honestly, some hiring managers could care less.   But there are many who will make note of those who took the time to follow up and some even factor it in during the decision making process.   Here’s the challenge. You will have no idea whether your interviewer cares about your thank you note or not.   So why take a chance?   Send one every time.   The few minutes it will take to send off a sincere and thoughtful note could mean all the difference to you making it to the next step.   Here’s a template to make your email “thank you” easier.   Hi or Hello [ interviewer name ]: Thank you so much for meeting with me today to discuss the position of [ job title ]. It was a pleasure to learn more about the role and the company. I’m very exited about the opportunity to join [ company name ] and help [ insert main purpose of job i.e. increase sponsorships at your next event/expand your marketing efforts/increase fundraising dollars or exhibitor revenue ]. I look forward to hearing from you regarding next steps. Please don’t hesitate to contact me by email or phone if I can provide additional information. Regards,   If you would like to include something more about the interview/opportunity, feel free to do so. This is particularly effective if you had a detailed/engaging discussion around a specific opportunity or challenge that will face the new hire. Making reference to the discussion will serve to bring you top of mind to the note recipient. Just be sure to keep it brief.   Basically your thank you should include three main points. 1.  Thank the interviewer for the meeting. 2.  Express interest in the opportunity and make reference to the interview. 3.  Repeat your interest by referencing next steps and welcoming further contact.   Don't forget....   As with any of your job-seeking documents, make certain that your thank you note is error-free . This is not the time to rush a note off without proof reading.   Include your phone number(s) on the email for easy reference.   Keep your note short but professional. Even if your interview was on the casual side and you made a friendly connection with your interviewer, stick to business-like communication.   If you feel as though you'd like to do something a bit more significant, you can also mail a hand-written thank you note in addition to sending the email. This isn't always necessary but there can be times when you know this would be a good move. Just be sure to send it off within a day or so of the interview.   Consider your thank you note as part of the interview process. Don't skip it.   It could make all the difference to landing the job!     Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Job seekers : Create a Free Account to get job alerts, post your resume and more! Employers : Post your event job today! Save time and money and reach a qualified audience.    
No one knows more than event people how precious a 3-day weekend can be.   That extra day without client calls or team meetings can mean the world. Even more so when it comes at the height of the planning schedule.   Of course not everyone in events gets to enjoy the break. Many will be working on community events or other seasonal festivals.   But for those who can take advantage of a 3-day break? They know how to maximize the benefits.   Just as with everything they manage, successful event people plan their time off. They know that it’s far too easy to let the long weekend fly by without truly feeling the benefit.   So whether they are looking for some extra rest or hoping to wrangle the to-do list to the ground, here are 12 things successful event people do before and during a long weekend.   They plan ahead at the office If they want to truly take some down time and avoid working at all on the long weekend, they start early or stay late in the days ahead to finish up work that they might normally tackle on a weekend. Most importantly they take care of pressing tasks that would nag at them if not complete. They tidy their workspace before they leave the office. They know a clear mind is one that can rest and re-energize.   They set their “to do” list for the first day back They know that if they pre-plan what needs to be done on the first day back, they can walk away from work already prepared to jump back in after a 3-day break. This provides significant relief from the constant mental review of pending tasks.   They make plans They call for a spa appointment, buy movie tickets, make dinner reservation, schedule activities with the kids or otherwise actually plan time for anything they want to do. They recognize this will help provide the break they are looking for. Left to chance the time off could slip away without having done anything they were hoping.   They work if they have to (but schedule it) Sometimes taking the entire long weekend off is impossible due to schedules. Or the advantage of getting a little extra work done without typical daily interruptions can be very appealing. If that’s the case successful event people schedule their work time so it doesn’t spill over into all three days. Doing a little here and a little there can result in a feeling of no time off at all. They set aside and plan one full day or part of a day so they have the rest of the time free.   They spend time with the important people in their lives It can be really hard to find quality time during the week or when the schedule is frantic so a 3-day break is the perfect time to turn off work and focus on the ones they love. They know that extra time with the most important people in their lives can be very grounding.   They unplug For a day, part of a day or the whole long weekend. They know this can be the most important way to clear their head and refresh. The benefit of time without devices provides a mental break that is hard to match.   They take care of chores They know that the extra day can be the perfect time to get those nagging chores out of the way that there never seems to be time for. With still two other days, even if one entire day is spent getting the home to-do list cleared up, it’s worth the peace of mind when the busy schedule at work really kicks in.   They plan on for some “unplanned” time The planning doesn’t stop with scheduling appointments and outings. They also plan for true down time. The relentless schedule can turn off for a day (or two or three) while they re-charge and rest. They know unless they actually plan it they could fill the time with no end of activities. Consciously planning for down time and then following through also heightens the benefits.   They make notes if something comes to mind They know that when the mind is at rest and gets freed up from the day-to-day grind they will likely have ideas or solutions pop up or they’ll remember something they meant to do. Rather than getting caught up in the details or continually reminding themselves all weekend they make a quick note so they won’t forget and get on with enjoying the down time.   They get outdoors They know that some fresh air and sunshine can go a long way to recharging the batteries. It’s a great antidote for all the time spent in the office and on site in stuffy meeting and convention facilities. Whether it’s biking with the kids, morning coffee on the patio or just a long walk, fresh air is a rejuvenating force.   They take a quick get-away for a change of scenery Getting away for the entire long weekend isn’t always possible or even desirable. Instead they opt for a quick trip just an hour or two away which can be an excellent mental break without the fuss of planning of a longer get-away. Even a day long driving trip to enjoy lunch in a nearby town can be beneficial.   They do things that re-energize their passions They know that the day-to-day workload can be draining and can easily overshadow enthusiasm for the things they love. They find time to have some fun and engage in activities that fuel their creative spirit. They know that purposeful attention to keeping their passions alive is critical to success.     Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Job seekers : Create a Free Account to get job alerts, post your resume and more! Employers : Post your event job today! Save time and money and reach a qualified audience.  
  There is a reason that “event planning” consistently lands near top of the list of the most stressful careers.   Timelines, details and a schedule that never quits. The constant pressure of planning ahead is exhausting. To say nothing of the hours.   It’s a very consuming career.   But honestly, that's what most of us love about the job. The world of events offers untold challenges, is anything but 9 to 5 and we are adrenaline junkies for the onsite experience.   Those working in this great industry have amazing stamina and resilience.   There can however, come a time when it all catches up. When the demands of the job take a toll on our personal and physical well-being.   Here are some signs that it may be time to take a break.   How much of a break is the question.   Spot the symptoms early and it’s much more manageable. Let it go too long and it will take more than just a fun weekend away to feel refreshed.   1.  Impatience There is naturally a little impatience in all of us in events. After all we’re on a deadline…oh and perfectionists as well. But the opposite is also true. We regularly have to exercise extreme patience when we know a reactionary position won’t serve any purpose. If you notice that your impatience is pretty much constant or flaring up at inappropriate times, don’t ignore it. It’s a sign that you need to find time to centre yourself again.   2.  Sleeplessness If you experience the odd night when you have trouble letting go of the million or so details running around in your head that’s pretty normal. However if this goes on for too long your lack of sleep will negatively impact everything you do. Both physically and mentally. Over-tiredness can even lead to anxiety that in turn will cause more problems. Take it as a very real sign that you need a break.   3.  Obsession over mundane details If you find yourself obsessing over things that normally roll off your back or struggling to accomplish tasks that typically require little effort it can be an indication that you need to pull back. Separate yourself from the minutia for awhile. Sometimes burnout can cause us to focus on the little things as a way to avoid dealing with more daunting tasks that feel overwhelming. Find a way to give your mind a break by engaging in something that makes you think…as long as it's not work!   4.  Inability to be happy with accomplishments or success If you are typically happy in your work but find yourself missing the joy and satisfaction that your accomplishments have always provided, think about taking a break to help rejuvenate. The key is to empty your head of all the details and elevate your thinking back up to the bigger picture. Re-discover the passion.   5.  Constant fatigue            This is especially noteworthy if you are getting plenty of sleep, eating and drinking well and yet still feeling tired. Could it be that you are just exhausted in your work? Try taking a good break and see if that refreshes you.   6.  Frustration If every little thing that goes wrong leaves you feeling like screaming in frustration it could be a sign that it’s time to walk away for a bit. Our tolerance gets really weak when we are burnt out. A break will help put things back in perspective.   7.  Lack of creativity (or choosing same-old, same old) This can be a very distinct sign that you need to find a way to revive your spirit. “New” is the lifeblood of any event and the challenge of keeping things fresh is typically what energizes most event people. If you find yourself cutting corners or lacking the enthusiasm to change things up, it's time to take a breather to reignite your imagination and boost your creativity.   Most event professionals suffer from some level of burnout during their career.   Early recognition is key. Be aware of the signs and take whatever break you can. Don't let it get the better of you and negatively impact your work.   Sometimes just an evening out during a crazy busy time or a weekend completely off the grid can be enough to keep you energized. Smaller breaks will help get you through to your vacation time...which you should be sure to take!   Be diligent around keeping balance in your life.   A consistent effort to take breaks you need will help you stay healthy, happy and thriving in the job you love.     Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Job seekers : Create a Free Account to get job alerts, post your resume and more! Employers : Post your event job today! Save time and money and reach a qualified audience.
It’s happened again. No response to your job application. You feel frustrated and maybe even a little weary of the process. After all you’ve been firing out loads of resumes. But...is that the problem? Have you taken to applying to every position available without much thought? Have you become lazy with your “job” of finding work? It’s easy to become complacent about it. Resume is done. Cover letter is done. Hit send and off it goes. Here’s the problem with that. Employers see right through it. They spot these very common shortcuts and can interpret them as a sign you have no genuine interest in THEIR particular job.   Form cover letter Hiring managers see hundreds of cover letters and resumes. They know when someone is using the same old form letter over and over. Nothing stands out. Nothing shows interest in meeting their needs. Here’s what they think - you are applying for just any old job and not THEIR job. And the biggest give-away? The letter that is addressed “To whom it may concern” when a contact name has been provided in the job posting. That one slip of laziness alone will see  your resume land in the trash. A cover letter is the opportunity to communicate your unique qualifications and interest in the job. Take the time to make yours genuine and specific to the job opening. Some employers read the letter first. Others read it after the resume, looking for some insight into your personality or communication style. Some won’t read it at all. But why take a chance. Your letter could be the difference in getting an interview. Customize it every time! Need help? Take the Agony Out of Cover Letter Writing   Not following the application instructions Instructions for applying can be very simple or quite extensive. Read and follow them. Common requests are things like how to complete the subject line when applying by email, combining the cover letter and resume in one document, reference requests and addressing the application to someone in particular. Here’s what a hiring manager thinks when you don’t follow their application requests. How badly do you want this job? What type of employee can they expect if you can’t follow simple requests? Are you just applying for any old job and not THIS one in particular? It’s amazing how often application instructions are not followed. Some employers have even taken to indicating in their job posting that those who do not follow instructions will not be considered. Others feel the same but don’t say it. You should not assume the employer won’t notice or care. Follow the application instructions. If you haven't been, it could be a reason you are not hearing back. What a shame over something so simple.   Not obviously qualified for the job If you are qualified for the job based on the description, make certain it is clear right up front in both your resume and cover letter. You have only seconds for the reader to make the connection. This means customizing your resume every time. A hiring manager with dozens of applications to read will not take the time to search through your resume or cover letter looking for some indication that you have the experience they need. Use the words they have used in the job posting where possible so they instantly see the fit. Don’t create a buzzword-filled professional profile that doesn’t give any actual details of your background or experience. Get the critical points up front for each of your past positions. Re-order or change the focus of your accomplishments every time if you have to. Make sure the hiring manager recognizes you have the experience they need. If you feel certain you are qualified for the job despite non-standard type experience it’s up to you to make the hiring manager see it too. They can’t read between the lines and don’t have time to figure out if you might be qualified. Take the time to make the connection obvious. If you are not at all qualified for the position, don’t apply. Hoping the employer will magically think you are right for the job isn’t going to happen and not hearing back will only frustrate you. Your time would be better spent looking for the right opportunity.   You may feel like applying to as many openings as possible and as quickly as possible is the answer to finding a job. And it may feel customizing your documents is a waste of time. But stop with the shortcuts! Aim for quality not quantity. Take the time to make each application count. You’ll have a much better chance of getting to an interview!   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.          
Have you ever noticed that when you help someone you feel really good? But when you ask for help for yourself you feel like you’ve failed? Why is that? Why are we happy to help others but reluctant to let them reciprocate? I think it’s as simple as give and take. In helping others we are giving. In accepting help we are taking. We like to give. We are uncomfortable to take. But...what if you changed your perspective? What if, in accepting help, you were actually giving? You are! Both to those helping and to yourself. And here’s how:   You are giving others the chance to learn something new. In fact keep it in mind when deciding what someone can help with. What are their strengths and how could they be put to good use with what you need done? Could they do something they haven’t before which expands their skillset or opens their eyes to work they haven’t experienced before? It can be a great way for newer or junior staff members to learn more about the organization or for you too assess their capabilities with additional responsibilities. A colleague might enjoy a change of pace from their everyday tasks and gain a greater understanding of the process.   You give yourself the opportunity to practice your instructional or coaching skills. You’ll likely have to give direction for what has to be done so make good use of the chance to guide your helper and to clearly explain the task at hand. Steer clear of the excuse that it would take longer to explain than to do it yourself. In some cases it might be true but in others is just an excuse not to accept help. Challenge yourself to find a way to make the information clear and concise. Or switch tasks…get them to help with something else allowing you to clear up the more challenging work.   You give yourself the chance to take on something new If you can get help with the task that is taking so much of your time it could leave you open to work on that great new idea you’ve been hoping to implement. What if that new idea meant greater success with your work? Would your boss be more impressed that you took on something new rather than struggling to get the other work done? Expand your thinking beyond the troubling task at hand to the possibilities if you had help. That's a more positive and happier place to be.   You give everyone involved the joy of collaboration. Most people have fun sharing the load and working together to accomplish what one person can’t. As the saying goes…many hands make light work. A few people together will typically have more fun aiming for a common goal than one person slugging it out alone. Suddenly your burden feels a lot lighter and everyone has had fun in the process.   You are giving your helper you a chance to share new ideas. It is not uncommon to have someone new to a task come up with a change in how it’s done…maybe faster or easier. Be open to to ideas. Give them direction on what needs to be done and encourage a different way of doing it. It’s a great opportunity for them to feel like they’ve made a contribution and for you to find a new way of doing things.   You are giving someone else the opportunity to feel good. Remember those feelings of happiness and satisfaction and even gratitude when you were able to help someone? Let someone else experience those same joys when they help you. Suddenly you'll feel happier too.   So you see? A purposeful change of perspective turns taking into giving which in turn changes accepting help into something very positive. For us and for those helping. Give it a try. What could you get help with today?   Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!
Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how "power posing" — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don't feel confident — could have an impact on our chances for success. Think of all the situations this could help with - a job interview, a client meeting - maybe even a meeting with your boss? We all need a little confidence boost every now again. Give this simple method a try. It's worth the watch!
We all want success. And we know we need to work for it. Over the course of our careers we seek out professional development opportunities to keep us learning and growing. Special courses and industry designations refine our skills. Practical advice from a boss or mentor is valuable on the job learning. But the greatest impact on our development, and ultimately our success, can come from the most unlikely of sources…those super-annoying people at work! Despite being incredibly annoying, these work colleagues can teach us a great deal and set us up for success as our career grows. We just need to be smart enough and aware enough to find the lessons that each of these annoying types can teach us.   The Arguer While we hate these types, they can be the very best for challenging our way of thinking. “Yes” people do nothing to incite change. And change is key to our growth and development. Learn to look beyond the argument itself to the root of the message. Is there something to be learned…a new way of looking at things? Understanding the benefits of being challenged will encourage you to always surround yourself with people who will question the status quo and keep you moving forward.   The One Who Doesn’t Like You It’s pretty hard to think you can learn from someone who doesn’t like you. But if we are really honest and push past the fact that we are offended, does the person who dislikes us actually have a valid reason? Is there something to be learned? Something we can do differently? Perhaps not. But try looking at the situation honestly. You might uncover something interesting about yourself that could be changed to make you better. Growing in self-awareness is an important part of professional development. Great leaders recognize how their behaviors and actions impact others.   The Terrible Boss If you have aspirations of a leadership role, the terrible boss you have now (or have had in the past) could be the greatest influence on your professional development. While it sounds counter-intuitive, think hard about everything you recognized as detrimental to the work or the people while under the direction of this person. What did you hate most? What behaviors caused no end of stress with getting the job done? What caused you or your co-workers frustration or anger? If you know the answers to those questions then you definitely learned from the experience. Sometimes our greatest learning comes from recognizing what we DON’T like. Chances are when you take on a leadership role you will be more successful for what you learned from that terrible boss.   The Competitive One You know the type. The one who always has to be best or achieve the most? So annoying. Ever find yourself trying to keep up? Truth is that nothing pushes us harder or faster than a little competition. Most of us are wired to win and we will go the extra mile to lead the way. We should be grateful to the competitive person in our circle rather than annoyed. Chances are they have pushed us beyond what we would have otherwise accomplished and inspired us to grow professionally.   The Lazy One While we wish these folks would pull their weight, do they actually do us a favour at times? Do they put us in the position to take on new responsibilities? When a new or special project comes along, you know they won’t jump at the chance. The door is open for you. This gives you the opportunity to add to your toolbox of skills or accomplishments. Instead of being annoyed at their laziness, secretly thank them for leaving the opportunity unchallenged so you can push forward with growing your career.   The “Stuck in The Old Way” One These people can drive you crazy. For whatever reason they will not embrace or even consider new ideas and want to keep doing everything the same old way. If this is your boss it’s an even bigger annoyance and can leave you feeling frustrated and trapped. Don’t let them dampen your enthusiasm for progress. Use the situation as a learning experience on how to most effectively present new ideas. See if you can figure out their reasoning for resistance. Learn what DOES get their attention. Learn to present the idea in a way that engages them. Practice patience without giving up your passion. Learning to effectively introduce and influence others with new ideas is key to so many opportunities in business (and in life for that matter). Your success is worth the time spent on this.   The Boaster Ok so these types can possibly be the most annoying of all. And it’s not like these types are always loud and overt about their many accomplishments. Sometimes it’s just someone who constantly mentions how good they are at something or are so busy patting themselves on the back that they forget to praise others. This is another case of learning “what NOT to do” as you grow in your career and chalk up more and more successes. But is there also a lesson in self-confidence? Does the boasting bother us because we wish we were just a little more able to toot our own horn? Speaking up with confidence about your abilities or successes is important. (Just pick the appropriate time and frequency.) Reminding others of your capabilities may open up new opportunities.   While it’s pretty unlikely that these super-annoying people will…well…stop annoying us, they may just push us to learn and grow. Be the smart one. While everyone else is spending their time being annoyed, jump on the chance to learn from the opportunities they present. A little change in perspective can go a long way toward your success. And make you happier too!   Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!  
Event set up day is here. It’s the time all event managers live for. Planning is done and it’s on to execution and delivery. As tired as you are from dealing with the last minute changes and packing up to move on site, you know that the longest of hours are yet to come. Months, sometimes years of preparation give way to a hectic and often marathon-length set up, followed by long days during the event and then load out. But you love it! It’s the time you are at your best. You deftly handle every detail and issue and crazy last minute request…and all with a smile on your face. There is just one minor detail that sometimes gets in the way. You were already tired coming into the set up. And the long hours are just starting. Sometimes, without even realizing it, the fatigue catches up. It can manifest itself in small ways. Maybe you aren’t quite as patient as you normally are. Or as cheerful with others as you’d like to be. Maybe you even feel headachy lack your typical energy. None of these are good. Especially on site at your event when you want to be at your best. Don’t let fatigue ruin your moment or get the better of you. Plan ahead to win the battle against it. Here are a few things to keep in mind. Drink a lot (mostly water) If you want to wage war on fatigue while you are working an event, this is the best and most important strategy. Often when we are feeling tired, it is directly related to dehydration. Drinking water consistently throughout the day (and into the wee small hours) works wonders at helping to keep you alert and strong. Dehydration can cause many symptoms of varying severity including headache, tiredness, dry mouth, lips and eyes, lethargy, weakness and dizziness. All of these can happen without us recognizing dehydration as the cause. Don’t let it get the better of you. If you start experiencing any of these symptoms sit down for a few minutes and drink a good amount of water. You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel when it kicks in. And then keep drinking. Avoid the temptation to drink too much coffee without also drinking water. We all love our coffee for the energy boost but don’t get lulled into thinking you have had enough to drink just because you’ve had a couple of cups of coffee. You would still benefit greatly from drinking lots of water. Nourish yourself It can be a challenge to eat properly on site; particularly during load-in. Meals may not be readily available and if they are may be of the fast-food variety. In addition, you are probably on a tight schedule and taking time to eat may seem like a “nice idea” that’s never going to happen. That being said, eating something will go a long way to fighting fatigue. Take a few minutes to nourish yourself. There is no prize for starving - and it will probably make you cranky – not what you need on site. Eat small meals or snacks frequently rather than one big meal. This will help keep your energy level consistent. A big meal may make you feel tired. Pack some healthy snacks that you can grab on the go. Fruit, cheese, nuts, protein bars, veggies, yogurt are all great options. (The fruit and veggies will also help with your fluid intake.) A few minutes of planning to have these on hand will pay off in a big way Eat as healthy as possible and for nutrition. Be good to your body. It’s under a lot of stress and needs taking care of. You will be rewarded by feeling and performing at your best. Take brief breaks Running an event is an immersive experience. So much so that our ability to remain calm, objective and quick thinking can be challenged. Just a few brief minutes of quiet time can go a long way to keeping you on an even keel and on top of your game. This is especially important if things are frantic. It sounds counter-intuitive but give it a try. This isn’t about walking away for an hour or even a half an hour. Literally just a few minutes can have a surprising effect on your focus. Put in the earbuds and listen to your favourite tune that inspires, relaxes or gets your energy up. Get some fresh air. Breath deeply for a few minutes. Venues can be dark and the air stale and drying. A quick trip outside can be very restorative. Walk briskly for 2 minutes. Often times there can be a lot of standing around as set up occurs. A quick walk will get the blood flowing and leave you feeling energized. Stretch. It helps relieve stress and tension and relaxes your muscles.   Symptoms of fatigue are not always obvious. Watch for the small signs or better still stay ahead of it by drinking lots, eating well and keeping your frame of mind fresh. You’ll enjoy your time on site so much more. And be an unstoppable event manager in the process!   Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!  
Do you ever walk away from a job interview feeling really confident about your chances only to find out you didn’t get the job? Happens to everyone. And the harsh reality is that most of the time you will never know the reason. It can be extremely frustrating. But don’t lose heart. Very often there are factors involved that are out of your control. All you can do is keep a positive outlook and carefully and honestly review everything that IS in your control. First and foremost, you know your resume is working for you. It got you in the door for an interview. Well done. So that just leaves the interview itself. Anything you could change or improve? Having interviewed many event professionals across all levels, I can share with you a few issues that can take even the best candidate out of the running. These could impact a hiring decision for many jobs. They are however particularly important in the events industry . I’ll tell you why and how to fix. Have a look and think honestly if you might have unknowingly made any one of these blunders. The good news is they are rarely done intentionally and easy to correct once you are aware.   You sound like a know-it-all Common advice for an interview is to exude confidence while sharing your accomplishments and experience. It’s good advice. But it can be taken too far. Often times a candidate gets so caught up in conveying their great depth and breadth of experience and are so anxious to come across as confident and extremely knowledgeable that they leave the interviewer wondering… will they take the time to understand and learn about our particular needs? Every hiring manager wants to hear what you have done. And they want to feel confident that you have the right experience. But…they also need to know that you are open and eager to connect with THEIR particular challenges and opportunities. Because every role in events is different. Every event faces a unique set of challenges. Even with very similar events, factors such as the industries they serve, the audience, length of time the event has been running and the geographic location can make a big difference. So while all your past experience is extremely valuable, so too is what you WILL do for this new employer. And THAT is what they care about most. Keep these ideas in mind to let your interviewer know you are open to learning and adapting: As you talk about your past experience, interject what you learned along the way. This can easily be done especially when talking about moving from one position to the next. Example: When I moved from company A to the role at Company B it put me in a position to learn more about sponsorship and how to effectively execute sponsorship plans which I’ve found to be very valuable. Or…When I went to work with Company B it was my first time managing an assistant so I had lots to learn regarding mentoring and delegation but I really enjoyed it. Or you can talk about how you adapted when you faced a particular emergency and what you learned from it. You get the idea. If you acknowledge you had learning to do along the way it signals to your interviewer that you will be willing to learn what it takes to bring them success. Ask questions. Directly ask about challenges and opportunities if they don’t bring it up. Example. What do you see as the greatest opportunity facing your event in the next cycle? Ask questions along the way when discussing the challenges or opportunities to show you have an interest in helping. Digging a little deeper into the issues shows your intent to learn. Show interest in the work, not just in getting hired . Eagerness to show you are the right person to be hired is great. Letting your interviewer know this is genuinely the work you want to do is even better. Don’t be afraid to let them know what you like about this opportunity. Perhaps it is the industry the event serves or key responsibilities that are right up your alley. The fact is there is that there is always plenty to learn and new circumstances around every corner. This is in part what makes this industry so wonderful. Never a dull moment!   You come across as low energy It is no secret that working in the events industry requires a lot of energy. Long hours and hectic schedules are more the rule than the exception even before the event takes place. Physical demands on site are even greater with lots of walking, standing and endless interaction with people. While your interviewer won’t have the opportunity to actually see you in action they can and will draw conclusions during your time together. They need to feel your energy. (Don’t worry I’m not going to suggest you start doing chin-ups on their door frame or dancing around their office.) But you do need to give them the confidence that you are a do-whatever-it-takes kinda person. Here are a few things that signal your energy. A firm handshake. No need to squeeze their hand til it hurts but a firm handshake reads as confident and energetic. Speak in positive terms. Negativity has the effect of lowering the energy of a conversation. Your interviewer may ask during the interview if you are committed to long hours during event set-up or weekend work. Be sure to have examples ready of how you had to put in extra time during past experiences and let them know that you recognize this is part of the job. Better still if you let them know this is part of the reason you love working in events so much. For many…it is! Non-standard hours and a do-what it takes mentality are among the many traits that many event professionals find enticing about working in the industry. Sit up straight and lean slightly forward. Even without your body moving it can signal energy by showing you are present and engaged. Don’t be afraid to demonstrate enthusiasm for either what you have done or the new opportunity at hand. Enthusiasm is infectious. Yes it’s important on initial greeting but keep it in mind throughout the interview. Before you head into an interview, consciously think about being energized. Do whatever gets you pumped and excited about the opportunity. It will make a difference!   You don't engage with your interviewer It is easy to slip into a matter-of-fact demeanor especially if you have been doing a lot of interviews or if you are not certain that this is the position for you. This is a sure-fire way to take yourself out of the running. Engage with your interviewer. Let them know this opportunity matters to you. Even if you are not sure, the only way to find out is to be fully present. Keep in mind they will be imagining you dealing with clients, suppliers and other staff. They will be looking for an open and engaged communication style. When you meet the interviewer, smile as you shake hands and look them right in the eye. A smile is welcoming and signals you are happy to be there. Be sure to make good eye contact throughout the conversation. Not in a creepy way. Just make sure that you are not looking off somewhere else when answering a question or avoiding eye contact altogether. Avoiding eye contact can create doubt and even signal lack of confidence. Just as mentioned in demonstrating energy, sit up straight and lean in a bit to the conversation. Don’t sit slumped or too relaxed in your chair. This can signal disinterest or over confidence. Ask questions of your interviewer particularly when they ask if you have any. Consider not only ask questions about the job but ask questions of them things like how long have they worked there and what do they like best about the company or their job. Make a human connection. Don’t feel obliged to leave all your questions until the end when you are asked. Ask questions along the way. This signals you are focused and engaged. Don’t be afraid to laugh or smile throughout the interview. It’s easy to become so uptight that you come across as robotic. Not a good impression for someone in events. Making a connection and engaging with your interviewer is as important as your resume. Let them picture you in the position at hand. Work as hard at the impression you leave with your interviewer as you do with answering questions about your experience. Starting an interview full of energy, engaging with your interviewer and demonstrating that you are sensitive to learning about their particular challenges and opportunities may not guarantee you the job. But you will certainly know that you did everything possible to make yourself a memorable candidate…for all the right reasons.   EventsWork is the leading job board for event jobs in North America! Check out the latest jobs here!   Post by Margaret Johnston, eventswork.com As a career event professional, Margaret brings valuable insight and knowledge to the recruitment, management and development of high-performance teams for the event industry. A strategic and inspiring leader, Margaret has held executive roles for several global event management companies and key roles in the start up and orchestration of many high profile and international events.