While selecting an event manager to manage a particular event for you, it’s critical to define the type of event it is and accordingly choose the right person for the job. Many misconceive the term event manager to mean a person who can put together an event, irrespective of the scale or the type of the event. Seldom do people consider the small but significant differences which exist between a corporate event manager and a social event manager. These key differences can be highlighted very subtly yet identifying these differences while making a decision can be a make or break factor for an event.
A corporate event manager typically manages conferences, seminars, brand launches, activations and interactions with corporate houses and companies. They have a mission, vision and sales targets, so the direction to be worked in would be how you optimally capitalize your investment and accordingly get a return on the same through targeted activities which help deliver the company’s message to the end consumers.
A social event manager on the other hand manages weddings, anniversaries, birthdays etc. and would interact with individuals who have a vision of the perfect wedding, anniversary or birthday which they have been dreaming of for days, months or maybe even years.
And that is where the key difference lies, the emotional attachment which people have to a social event makes managing these kind of events a daunting yet exhilarating experience. A social event manager has an innate ability to connect with the individual more than the event, understand their client’s thoughts, perceptions and accordingly provide a service which exceeds expectations. The key to success for a social event manager is to have an ability to not only understand what has been said, but more importantly identify what has not been said. With a corporate event on the other hand, everything right from conceptualization to execution is centered around highlighting the needs of the audience attending the event and accordingly position ones product or service to maximize return on investment, so the direction that is worked towards is to make the company event a success and individual emotions rarely affect the course of the event as a whole.
Most social events are paid for by the individuals or families themselves, unlike corporate events that are funded by corporate budgets. This places constraints on how these costs are managed right upfront. Weddings, for example, can be funded by a collection of sources including personal funds, loans and gifts. This makes managing the budget a critical part of a successful event – sometime there is little or no room for tolerance for budget overruns or last minute expenses that were not accounted for in the planning, and can cause frustration for all parties involved.
The final and perhaps the most important difference is that most social events (weddings, birthdays and anniversaries in particular) are once-in-a-lifetime events. A corporate event provides opportunities for constant improvement and a platform to build a brand of events in itself which happen year after year.
From the differences highlighted above, social event management and corporate event management are two fundamentally different sections of the event management spectrum and the thought process which a corporate event manager follows is not possible to implement within a social event and vice versa.