Advice on starting an event business:
You need experience so do absolutely anything. It doesn’t matter how big or how small, just do the work. Running an event is all about experience. No one will trust you to create their experience if you don’t have any. Work hard. Simple!
Do work even if you aren’t going to make any money! Large profits are uncommon when you are starting your event or your event business. Naturally, you don’t want to lose money but you may just have to, especially if you are building your own event.
Don’t be precious about your time. It’s all you have at this stage so rather spend your time wisely and productively by doing any work you can get your hands on. Don’t turn work down because you think you are worth more. You’ll end up sitting around waiting for the ideal client or job when you could be spending that time learning while you work. Do any job that will increase your knowledge, improve your resume and, even more NB, allow you to build connections and relationships. Most importantly, get in the game! You need to learn fast and that’s best done learning on the job.
Advice on growing an event business – do the exact opposite to starting the business:
Once you have established your event or your business you need to be extremely selective about the work you take on. Do work you are good at that will either grow your event or your business. Walk away from anything that doesn’t lead to where you want to be.
Profit is everything! Only do work or build events where the margins are good, or the profit is acceptable. You generally work for zero profit or low margins only when starting out. Once you are experienced and good at what you do, you need to be ruthless about the work you commit to. Companies that work for less than what they are worth, or, who allow their margins to be minimised are soon out of business.
Never give your time away. Time is the commodity you are selling as an event person. That time may be used to work on strategy, conceptualising events or implementing the project. Time is limited and it is impossible to manufacture more. Time is all you have so charge for your time. Always.