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Career Story: Event Planner For The Government

Event Planner For The Government

Job Title: Meeting/Event Planner

Education: Columbia Union College, Strayer University

Previous Experience: Variety of administrative support positions.

Job Tasks:

  • Plan, implement, and manage and evaluate up to ten U.S. meetings, conferences and events ranging from 10 to 700 attendees per year.
  • Build and maintain relationships with vendors, suppliers, customers and exhibitors; negotiate and manage up to ten contracts per year.
  • Manage two professional meeting planners providing feedback, training and development.
  • Plan and execute major aspects of meeting management to include selecting sites, building registration processes and databases, and providing on-site management for assigned meetings ranging from 10 to 700 attendees.
  • Prepare and manage all necessary documentation following federal regulations within Customs and Border Protection including ensuring that all meetings meet the pre-approved Purchase Order for that particular event. Work closely with the government team lead on each event to accurately track and coordinate any changes made onsite.
  • Monitor and track costs, registration, and housing for all meetings and events so as to provide historical data to the client and the team for future events.
  • Organize contracts, promotional materials, and meeting files.
  • Direct day-to-day office operations, providing fundamental support to Contract Program Manager, Deputy Program Manager, and Government Director of the Training Branch of Customs and Border Protection. Local Property Officer for the Software Development Division (SDD)/Office of Information Technology (OIT) Training Branch. Coordinate new team member orientations with corporate and onsite. Function as a field trainer on various enforcement systems within CBP. Contract Security Officer (CSO) Reviewing and coordinating all Background Investigation issues with pertinent government personnel.
  • Successfully developed and implemented a new process for completing and submitting Background Investigation paperwork for contractors including a Guideline document.
  • Establish a Contractor Training Branch Orientation Program to increase the efficiency and motivation of all new team members.
  • Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is that you coordinate all of the details of an event or meeting. You work closely with many players, and constant attention to detail and organization is the key. The worst part of the job is tearing everything down once an event is over.

    Job Tips:
    1. Get involved with planning events. Even in high school, take charge of planning fund-raisers, homecoming, class trips and the prom. While in college, you should get involved with the local music industry and slowly began networking with musicians and or other groups.

    2. At least having an Associate's Degree in business management will give you some pratical business guidelines if you're looking to go out on your own. Experience working within a hotel, specifically as a social event sales manager.

    3. Become a certified meeting planner. Look into becoming a certified meeting planner in the next year or so. Event Planners who want to become a certified meeting planner should look into Meeting Professionals International at www.mpiweb.org

    4. When beginning work with a client, always get the budget first and then breakdown the different costs associated with the event. If you know ahead of time how much you have to spend in each category, you know where you can splurge and where to negotiate better costs.

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