Am I Too Old or Too Young to Become an Event Planner?
For many people, becoming an event planner is something they choose to do as soon as they discover their passion for coordination, detail, and celebration. For others, the choice comes later on after other career paths and years of consideration.
The beautiful thing about event planning is that it’s never too early or too late to begin learning professional techniques. As long as you can stay calm under pressure, think critically about details and timelines, and remain willing to learn, you’ll be prepared to take the first steps toward professional event planning at any age.
“Am I too young to become an event planner?”
When it comes to learning basic planning techniques and building a good foundation for professional training, you are never too young!
Any person with a passion for coordinating details and celebrating life’s landmarks should begin practicing whenever they can. In fact, the younger you start planning your own events (think birthday parties, sleepovers, etc.), the more time you have to improve and explore your skills.
It is true that many event planning programs or colleges require you to be at least 18 to enroll. There are some, however, that understand how the passion for event planning can start at a young age. Some programs accept students as young as 16, as long as a parent or legal guardian is willing to sign a consent form giving them permission to enroll.
In most places, event planning is an unregulated industry. States and provinces that do require licensing, however, also require you to be at least 18 years old to take the test. Remember that this doesn’t mean you can’t train earlier and gain experience until you’re old enough to be licensed. Certain regions might even license planners under 18, as long as they can provide pro7of of completed professional training.
If your local area doesn’t permit training or licensing until you’re 18, don’t be discouraged! Use online resources to help you begin practicing, or at least thinking about, basic skills. Google event planning blogs or vlogs and read planning magazines to introduce yourself to themes, décor styles, strategies, and trends. Use reputable resources as a research guide!
Here’s a list of where you can find event planning trends & inspiration.
The best thing you can do is practice. Help your mom plan her dinner party or throw your best friend an extravagant surprise birthday. You can even build a small portfolio to present to the programs you apply to later. People might not pay you for the first few parties, but your friends and family make great practice if they’re willing to let you take the reins. The more experience you have before training, the higher your chances of being accepted into the program of your choice when you’re old enough.
“Am I too old to become an event planner?”
As long as you’re passionate about event planning and willing to learn new things, you are never too old to become a professional planner! In fact, many planners start their careers after years of working in other industries, raising children, or debating whether they’re ready to commit.
For some, a later start is actually beneficial because they’ve already achieved goals and reached personal or professional milestones. Many older planners are prepared to devote their full attention to event planning. They’ve also had a chance to gain relevant life experience that might make them attractive candidates for training programs and potential clients.
Event planning programs, colleges, and licensing boards have no age limit for seeking professional training or becoming legally licensed. As long as you’re able to complete the tasks required by the planning process, you are not cut off from training as a planner just because you reach a certain age.
Getting your first clients
No matter what age you are when you begin your event planning career, attracting your first clients can be intimidating. You can make it easier by knowing where your target market lies, which can be influenced by your age.
In the public’s eye, a young event planner might appear trendy, fashionable, and up to date on the latest social and pop culture trends. This doesn’t mean that older planners can’t be these things too! It simply means that younger planners might have better luck targeting a younger crowd of potential clients than they would with more mature groups.
For example, young girls planning their “sweet 16” or graduation parties might be more attracted to event planners that are closer to their age. Mature planners are just as capable of planning awesome teen birthdays, but clients like to work with planners they can identify with. A 16 year old might be more excited to work with someone closer to their age who probably likes the same things as her.
Mature planners often have the best luck working with clients in a similar demographic to their own age as well. An elderly married couple looking for help with their glamorous 50th wedding anniversary will probably feel more comfortable hiring a mature planner with more life experience than they will hiring someone very young who perhaps hasn’t experienced many anniversaries of their own yet. Once again, this isn’t because young planners can’t coordinate classy events for older crowds! Clients might simply see themselves reflected in the experiences of a planner closer to their own generation.
Identifying your target market is a crucial step to building a client base in any business. Event planners are no exception. Don’t restrict who you’ll work with simply because of your age, but keep in mind which groups might be most keen to work with you. Who will identify with your experiences and style? A trendy young event planner could very easily be hired by an elderly lady hoping for a fun and exciting 90th birthday party and an older planner might be hired by a young mother planning a baby shower because she wants to work with someone who has been in her shoes. Don’t let yourself stress over whether or not you’re too young or too old to find clients. Instead, use your age to your advantage and market yourself to clients who will value your life experiences!
Regardless of your age, pursuing your passion for event planning is worth the time and effort. You should never be discouraged by other people questioning whether you are too old or too young to become an event planner. Professional planning is the type of industry where you are constantly learning and growing, no matter your age or experience level. If you have the dedication to develop your skills from basic to advanced, then you have the potential to excel at any point.