February 18, 2016 Cindy

How To Survive the 5th Most Stressful Job in America

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Our team at EOE will be the first ones to tell you that working for a small event planning agency is not your typical 9-5 job. Forbes recently published that Event Planning is the 5th most stressful job in the country with a stress level of almost 50%. We are constantly on the move for our clients whether we’re rounding up samples, venue hunting, or in meetings. When it comes to the day of the event, event planners will most likely be on their feet for hours on end. Don’t get us wrong, we absolutely love what we do. We would rather be hustling around the city than sitting down all day every day – but success in this career field comes with being prepared.

Here are our tips on to survive the unpredictable hours of the event planner:

  1. Communication: With your client, with your team, and with your vendors. This will reduce the chance of any unwanted meeting surprises that you were unprepared for. When setting up a contract with your client, ensure that you are both on the same page as to how much you need each other to plan your event in detail. Some clients may want a weekly meeting with you to ensure they are kept in the loop of all aspects of the event, while others need a simple email only when they are needed. Open communication is crucial for keeping your work hours manageable and efficient.
  2. Organization: Today’s technology gives you no excuse when it comes to organizing your schedule on your smartphone, tablet, laptop, etc. Set alerts for your meetings and write everything down in your calendars to ensure you don’t double book a meeting or completely forget about one. This includes important dates to your event such as payment dates for vendors, cutoff dates for hotel room blocks, or RSVP deadlines.
  3. Take a Mental Health Minute:  This is one of the most important ones on our list.  At EOE we understand the importance of taking a mental break – a couple of games of Candy Crush, a few minutes on Facebook, whatever works for you.  Problem is, planners suffer from what we like to call shiny things syndrome.  Next thing you know your 10 minutes break turns into 30. Don’t let precious work time get eaten up by procrastination. During deadlines, every minute counts!
  4. Don’t Overbook: Event planners have a tendency to try to over-balance work and life. During busy times this can lead to burnout. As people pleasers it’s our first instinct to say yes, take on that extra task, grab a quick drink or try to hit those extra gym classes. Do what you need to do to keep your body and mind healthy, but don’t stress yourself out unnecessarily.
  5. Coffee IV : Sometimes, you don’t have the option to stop working until the job is done. It’s not uncommon to find one of us at the office way before 9am or way after 5pm to ensure that our client is satisfied. We often find ourselves wishing an IV of coffee is a real thing.  Multiple trips to Starbucks per day are a must for us!
  6. Ask for Help: Event planners have a ‘can do’ attitude which many times will be not only their biggest asset but their greatest downfall.  Delegate where you can. Ask someone to walk your dog during a busy day of meetings, or have your laundry dropped off instead of doing it yourself. The more you delegate in work and in life the more feasible things will feel.
  7. Celebrate: Congratulations! You’ve worked your butt off for months to plan an event and have executed it perfectly. Now take some time to relax and reflect, get a massage, take a long bubble bath, whatever you need to do in order to feel refreshed. Event planners need to keep themselves sane somehow!

Check out our Pinterest board for items that every event planner needs to tackle this job!

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