There is always room to learn more; reading, taking courses, watching videos, listening to podcasts. I do a lot of learning, all sorts, but I think the best way I have found to learn is by working with or for other planners. Learning from others in your field is invaluable.
By volunteering and being hired to work on events with other planners, I take every opportunity to learn from that experience. I watch and listen to everything that they do (some good, some bad).
Thanks to working with a colleague who manages multiple event registrations, for thousands of people, every year I was able to learn the best way to set up a registration desk and the details that were key to have on hand for our registration team.
Why learn the hard way when you can learn from others’ who’ve done it
I do my best to educate myself on trends, cool new products and services. But it is impossible for us to know everything. Last year I volunteered with one of my colleagues and their event had some great new signage I had never seen before. And they had a photobooth set up that was sure to be a huge success. I wouldn’t have known those existed if I had not attended this event.
They Are Not Always Right And That Is Just As Valuable
Learning from those who are more experienced then you doesn’t mean they are right. I have learned tons about how I don’t want to do things. One event I worked had the delegates moving between floors, requiring the use of the elevator. Moving 50-60 people between sessions did not run smoothly. It was confusing and time consuming for the delegates. If I had been doing the site selection and designing the event in that space I would have likely done the exact same thing. Thankfully I saw that experience play out and now I know that it doesn’t work. Why learn the hard way when you can learn from others who’ve done it?
Those experiences are just as important as picking up tips and tricks that work.
What have you learned by working with or for someone in your field?