I went for a meeting today, it was not about the event manager job; it was the report writing one. However, during the meeting I slipped in a mini professional intro: ‘I am an event manager’. The response was the usual ‘Do you have all the decor you need?’.
I stopped myself from pulling out my hair. For the 100th time, I am not a decorator, I am an event manager, planner and coordinator.
I don’t know when the terms became confused or lost in translation, but for some reason, when you drop the title event planner, or manager, people fanciful thoughts immediately land on decorator. Whomever this decorator was that ruined the face of event planning must have been quite the douche for stealing all the glory of the haggard person in the background running the show.
We have all watched the ‘Whose wedding is it anyway‘ and the ‘Wedding planner movies‘, where in those videos did you ever see the planner pulling decor from their stores? These are the people who source, contract and direct the decorator.
Borrowing from Jay-Z ‘Allow me to reintroduce myself’, I am an event planner. I do the running around, the sourcing, the pulling, the stitching, the everything that makes your event a success, including finding, briefing and directing the decorator. The decorator then brings in the fancy tit-bits that make the venue what you experience. It is my job to make sure that the food is right, that the venue is book and paid for on time. I check your guest list, I find your ushers. I bring in the entertainment and queue the speeches. And when the job is done, I tie up the financial lose ends and make you look good to your suppliers.
I may tell you which flowers to put up but I don’t supply the flowers, the florist does. It’s not so obvious, I am not a decorator. I am an event planner and coordinator.