7 traits of successful event planners & business owners


There are certain event professionals we look up to.

Not necessarily the ones making millions, but the ones who are growing their business year after year, seem to have everything under control and have a constant stream of BIG clients.

Have you ever wondered what they all have in common? Yes, each one is hardworking, organized and probably presents themselves pretty well. But, what is it that takes these people to the next level as #eventprofs and business owners?

And most importantly, have you got it too?

successful event planner

They are Proactive.

As an event planner, you need to stay several steps ahead. When running a business, you need a big picture strategy, so take time out to evaluate, course correct and plan ahead on a regular basis as an essential habit.

Being reactive will mean that you’re always feeling stressed as you play catch up and struggling to deal with problems as they come up. Being proactive is about anticipating challenges, taking advantage of opportunities and (ultimately) thriving.

Be Generous.

Having a competitive, I’m-better-than-you, self-obsessed mindset won’t get you very far in this industry. (can I get an AMEN?)

Generous leaders make the people around them feel good. Whether they’re employees, peers, vendors, clients or anyone else they work with. They know that sharing knowledge and advice within their professional community will gain them respect from their peers.

They also understand the importance of creating a positive culture within their team where everyone feels as though they are doing meaningful work and is contributing to a business where they are valued and appreciated.

Don’t forget mentoring! You can mentor at any stage of your career – giving back is not only good karma – you also position yourself as a thought leader in your field and help to build a community around you!

Be Passionate.

Passion is contagious. If you are happy and excited to get to work on a new project, it will start to influence other people around you and how they interact with you.

Vendors are going to be more excited to work with you, clients will sense that you’re totally into bringing their vision to life, employees, friends, family and even that random stranger you met at a networking event will be more interested in helping you achieve your goals. Passion can be reciprocal.

Possess Excellent Communication Skills.

Being an event planner means being able to communicate clearly and effectively with a wide range of clients and vendors. Being a small business owner means you need to be able to do that times a billion.

What does that look like? Someone who is able to stand up on stage and talk confidently about their business at a conference – all while keeping the audience fascinated and engaged.  But on a day-to-day level, it’s about being able to clearly communicate with your employees and vendors in a way that saves everyone time and eliminates mistakes. It’s also essential that you relay who you and your brand are effectively to your ideal clients through your marketing and communications strategies as well. Speak clearly, be yourself always.

Always Adaptable.

Planning in advance. It’s what #eventprofs and business owners do. You just can’t wing it.

However, we also all know that we can’t simply trust that everything will go to plan. A vendor might be running late, the weather might be causing chaos, the highway might be closed down again, the client might want some last minute changes…

Super event planners know how to adapt to whatever problems and changes are thrown their way. The same applies to business owners.

You don’t need a back-up plan for every possible eventuality but you do need a solution oriented attitude that will allow you to adapt to whatever is thrown your way, whether it’s unexpected overhead expenses, a realization that you need to change your target market or an employee leaving your team. Be nimble, be flexible. Don’t be afraid of change.

Understand the importance of delegating.

It’s no secret that event planners are generally known to be Type A control freaks. (I’m a card carrying one, myself.) It’s why we make sure no detail is overlooked and how we keep everything running smoothly. The downside is that it means we don’t like to relinquish control.

Unfortunately, if you are running your own business and you want to build it by taking on more clients or bigger events, you can’t do it all on your own. If you’re still a one person show, this might mean hiring someone for a few hours a week for admin work, updating your databases or to help you with your social media marketing,

If you’ve already got a team –you hired them for a reason! Make sure you understand their strengths, their career goals and then delegate tasks to them. They’re there to make your life easier and to help build your business!

Be a Super Listener.

This might mean listening to your clients, your employees or your vendors. Anyone linked to your business. When you really start paying attention to what people are saying (and NOT saying) and then make them feel like their opinion is valued, you’ll be surprised what you might learn.

Does an employee keep missing deadlines? They might be struggling because they lack the confidence that you could give them to get certain tasks done. Is a client holding back from signing a contract? It might be because they’re not sure if they really need to hire a planner. It’s your job to understand and explain all of the benefits you’ll bring to their event!

Think about all of the things you might be missing out on because you’re not really listening.

Don’t panic if you’re not scoring 100% on all of these traits! No one is perfect and becoming a successful event professional and business owner requires time spent working on yourself.

Take some time to think and reflect on your traits and try to identify the ones that you need to work on. Knowing your weaknesses and looking for ways to improve them is going to help turn you into a super successful business leader.

Do you agree? Is there anything we’ve left off the list? Comment below and let us know!

Want to boost your skills as a business owner and event professional?

The #9toSIMPLIFY challenge is coming back!

Launching again on Wednesday, May 17, 2017, this FREE 9-day challenge is built for event planners who are small business owners in the events industry who are looking to create a complete game plan to boost their cash flow, book BETTER clients and up level their business in 2017. (valued at $997 USD)

Are you up for the challenge?

 Signup here to get on the waiting list and take part in #9toSIMPLIFY:

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