When a company needs to throw a party, an entertainment manager makes it happen. In charge of organizing social events on time and under budget, an entertainment manager (also known as an event manager) uses social interaction to create a particular image for her client.
While event management may sound like one big party, it can be a difficult job with long hours and tense moments. Take a fresh look at entertainment management the next time you attend a high-class event.
An event manager oversees the execution of marketing events, from sponsorship to closing. They also coordinate event happening with other departments in order to optimize company resources and budgetary allotments. According to Kelly Brown of MSU Entertainment Online, a special event manager "is responsible for generating new business and for the smooth operation of assigned events, from beginning of planning stages, pulling together all event details for successful execution, through actual event completion and cleanup."
Event managers run a wide range of events for their clients, with some managers specializing in certain disciplines. There are specialty event managers for weddings, fashion events, tech, business and other areas, while some managers work in-house in a company's marketing department. Freelance managers, especially those with staff capabilities, may work a variety of occasions. If creatively powered and well connected, an entertainment manager can pull off most parties with a bit of research.
Special event managers are the host face of their particular client. Without them, special events would become a jarring occurrence that could potentially disrupt the customer's life. Parties need lots of work; staff management, hiring of entertainers, equipment rentals, clean up and hall rental all take time and budget management. A successful entertainment manager can coordinate all of these areas, using his contacts to make parties more cheap, easy and smooth.
Salary and Benefits
The average entertainment manager makes around $75,000 a year (as of 2009), according to Salary.com. If working for a corporation, benefits usually include health insurance and paid time off. Freelance entertainment managers are responsible for their own benefits, but many are able to afford their own coverage.
Added perks include networking, free entertainment, travel and free materials from sponsors. There are also interesting trade shows and get-togethers for industry professionals.
Education and Experience
For corporate event planning positions, a 4-year college degree is usually necessary. Preferred majors include liberal arts, public relations, communications, journalism or business; however, a freelancer can start her own business without a degree.
Event management is a career field that is amenable to promotion from the bottom up; many people get their start working as interns or volunteers, eventually moving up to more powerful positions and higher caliber clientele. Internships are a large help, as are assistant posts at the entry level.
The industry is poised to grow as new businesses and old companies hire marketing help. According to Brown, "there are numerous jobs in every corporation and business that have to do with planning and coordinating special events." Promotion involves getting management jobs at a larger company handling a higher budget and more prestigious occasions. Enterprising potential managers can also start their own event consulting firm, using their contacts to book parties and promote events.