How does an aspiring planner go about getting certified or at least partake in an internship?
I generally find these 2 Q’s are common asks when applying for our courses. I personally had a different experience and to say it “mildly”, my career has been an interesting journey
I would say if I had to do things over, maybe I would not have jumped in so quickly. However, on the other hand it fits like a glove and opens opportunities that are “not the norm”. I think we all struggle with deciding how we may fit into this industry. I still do. That may be another reason why it continues to work for our team. If we stay the same, then everything we do will also stay the same. For some, that’s OK. For me, it doesn’t work that way.
I have very few regrets in life. Even after over two decades of being involved with various types events, professional beauty events, education, training, sales kick-offs and etc…I still believe this is not the only “wild” card in the “Biz”.
I attended college for a degree in education. Twenty+ years later, I FINALLY was able see fireworks and a plan with what I wanted to try next. That plan generally changes by the day. This system doesn’t work for most; it’s just how I view things. I welcome anyone to try it. However, don’t be discouraged if this particular system is not right for your client or for you company. I’m a breed all on my own..(Ha)
Whether this is viewed as a good or bad method, I can’t answer that. And based on the good, I don’t want to change it as it may not work as well.
Even if I sincerely admit I have made some decisions that are more note as spontaneous and I did get burned before the tan. I really don’t regret the burn.
Will I stay as a “Celebrity Event Designer, TV Persona, Spokesperson etc” or will I introduce myself to something more creative or hands-on perhaps?
You have asked and I have done my best to answer this…I have no idea.
My question to you, wouldn’t you like to maximize your potential and be in charge of the outcome? If you happen to make notice, I’m thinking outside the box if you can smell the smoke, you have the skill-set. At least that’s how I view it. Ask another designer, you might get a totally different response
This is technically the “Big” secret on how one becomes successful. Seems easy enough right? It’s not. How would I know this? Well, I have been doing this for a while, I have taught /educated over 100 courses in the event world…That’s just since our move to the east coast and not even toughing the beauty industry which was event haven..Heck if they had a new conditioner, we had to have a class, an event, a proper company kick off, education for the educator, education by the educator for the user, IBS-ISES and product and style trade shows (Not Irritable Bowel) although at times, people gave me this….and this list goes on and on…
Why would you want to limit yourself with being “just another planner/coordinator”?
Thinking outside the box…Look at those you admire for their work, you will see a pattern with all of us and yet we are all so different. That’s a good thing. Being “Different” is not a disease; it’s the key ticket to success in any career ESPECIALLY based on today’s percentages of declining businesses.
You cannot expect what we had 3-5 years ago today. You cannot expect 2-3 years from today that we will still be the same, I can tell you, those who truly believe in making our world of events consistently different, will do it. They won’t let anyone get in their way. I know I won’t.
Who wants last year’s style? Not me…and I know the design world in general is not behind me on this, they are right beside me.
If you aspire to be the “next best” coordinator, you “WILL” make it happen, if you want it bad enough. Keep in mind, that one can aspire, but that is not a guarantee. A course, class or event conference with 15 “Key Note” speakers is NOT going to make that happen. If you spend $1500 for a weekend and are OK with just meeting people…Go.
Don’t set any expectations with who you meet. Your first hello could be your last one too. Do you really want to hear a bunch of people who only talk about how they became successful? Their method most likely, will not work the same for you. They came up with the “marveled” plan, but cannot customize it for you. That’s your job and again may be the wrong direction for your brand.
Remember the word “Brand”.
Generally one would think they are supposed to be using their “College” degree to teach. Yes, I do educate, I was thinking of Kindergarten in the late 80’s… (Which those already in this industry can relate to at times). If you have watched my career blossom via Style Network and various other directions (Call it selective ADD) I continue to “add” new skills to my resume. You can describe ADD however you’d like, I like to add things and lots and lots of things.
This is most “relevant” behind the scenes info regarding the career and the unknown information could certainly will give one an idea of some obstacles I have had personally Even with some of the most “gruesome” issues, I do not believe some could handle them. I still wonder how I did.
I have always thought the one teacher we most remember is your first experience in school and or with someone who instills a special feeling of accomplishment. So whether it be kindergarten or wedding orchestration courses, you will definitely walk away knowing more than you know right now.
You can’t say I’m wrong, or can you?
I admit freely, that I did not have the option or even opportunity of networking or training via the state where I am located. It was a journey that grew on its own. There are times where I asked myself, when I can I get off this train, and then a new opportunity had arrived. I’ve had to work through much trial and error and yes, sometimes it was overwhelming and scary. I felt things could have been done differently, but if they were done differently, would I still be here saying I took my journey on another path and I failed?
I honestly don’t know.
I will say It still is a challenge with any change I make. I hold my breath each time, and “jump”. I take more chances than most. Essentially, I will run into more issues when I “jump” too fast. However, It still outweighs the bad that I have faced head-on. You may wonder if it’s been worth it.
For me, yes. Like I said, I have no regrets.
I’ve felt at times that my title is better described as “She’s a Warning to Others”. While I hate to admit this, yes, you will learn based on my mistakes. I’m not afraid to share as I know this can happen to anyone. So why leave it to chance especially someone who is willing to do this the right way?
I have met so many fabulous people around the world that aspire to work in the event industry but are not quite sure how to begin. As with any career, being taught the right way based on industry standards would be the “best” way to start a career that can bring both success and happiness in many capacities.
There are many organizations that may teach the essentials, but what happens after you graduate a program?
It’s usually “Go Fly” right?
My question to such orgs, fly where? Who shall you call to allow for the hands on internship? You have all asked on so many occasions why it’s so hard to have a noted planner, etc whom will allow for you to just sit and observe? I cannot answer this question as I don’t know who you have asked and I also have no idea if they are even credible? TV does not make one credible. There are other industry professionals on television who “educate” in some capacity. Whether it’s good for you, that’s a great question.
I’ve learned from various planners already established, there’s a fear that you may take something away from the so called “Credible Coordinator”.
I have been working with various types of events for over 2 decades. My question has and is what can someone take? Your photos off the website? Yes…Your Packages? They have copied mine for their sites…I do have experience with this…and my solution is almost done!
Bottom line, you know who designed these so called “treasures” we create. I do love the areas the little “rats” forget to leave out (such as my name) and humorous to say the least. Thanks Guys!
Well, at least the right person did get credit for what you so ingeniously copied & pasted.
I do have one question for those who choose this route with any company forget mine; Did the packages, photos and or verbiage make you more successful? I have not noticed any changes with-in my own company maybe because this isn’t the way to get to know your client.
It could be karma; I would have to say it’s just common knowledge. You won’t get far in this or any career taking others ideas or photos. I’m sorry. But the good news is that I can show you how easy it is to design a system that will work just for YOU!
I must admit, I have been bad with networking in 2011. It’s always great meeting new people and sharing ideas or just opinions. I do hear that most planners are scared of something that may or can be taken from them. I still insist on saying you cannot take or have something be “taken”. I stick with the same theory, we all take ideas and use them based on our own personal needs.
I know you are familiar with the infomercials that have some fabulously good looking man who insists that this program to “buy and sell” properties with no money down works for everyone.
Maybe it did if you revealed this “secret” 10 years ago. The same exact person, the one that insists on this ingenious method that continuously brings income showing testimonials of 5-7 couples is now ingenious (love that word) as he is making more money from this book that is only $200. That also started about 7-10 years ago showing how much income they have coming in monthly based on this “fab” system.
Even with the tools I personally share and currently use, need to be tailored to fit your company based on your skill-set and your company’s services. You cannot compare or try to “compete” with someone who has been doing this for years. I’m not saying that you cannot become as successful or even more which would be my goal. I’m telling you as your fellow peer, it has to be about your system…If it’s not, you will fail. That is something I can promise you.
Trust me, I’m not going to lie and say I don’t get that evil twitch when someone takes my words/or photos and doesn’t at least give credit. And thinks this will make them successful. I do get upset and it’s not because I’m nervous, but more so, it’s just not honest. How do you think we arrived at this point in our career? Just like you, we had to work our honey buns off.
Fact as of 2011 , There is not a current ‘accredited” associate or undergraduate degree today offered for a career as a Wedding or Event Planner. However, it doesn’t mean proper training is not needed or offered. “Properly accredited educational facilities that may not allow for a degree in “Event Design or Coordination” do offer undergraduate degrees in “Hospitality Management or Business Management”. While these are considered very important careers that do have the knowledge to be successful with events in some capacity whether corporate or personal, it’s not enough to assist with what is needed once a student leaves the classroom. You need “Lab Time”…
“Lab Time” basically means…You spend time investing in actual duties that will show you the right method for specific tasks and etc.
To be honest, that reason alone is usually 70% of why one will fail. They are affiliated with an org which doesn’t really have a internship program or a supportive networking arrangement based on their specific skill set. You may find lots of networking meetings all over the US.
Is this the right way for you to “blossom” and expand especially with where you are in YOUR new career?
That is something only you can answer.
It’s important to understand that while these educators do teach the student what it takes in some capacity (Business Management etc), it does not mean one cannot be properly trained afterwards or even to receive a “certification/title” for this career . Educational enhancement courses are certainly a way to be considered “Top of the game” with regard to the know-how.
This is what CAES has been offering for over 7 years.
Each year, I learn something new and it’s added to the curriculum. Even if it’s bad, I add it. Educators, Keynote Speakers and etc should share their mistakes, if they say there are really no mistakes, I have swampland for them and a yacht for anyone that believes it.
CAES is considered a series of educational enhancement systems which are credible by many of our tri-state universities and or community colleges that offer these types of programs in the NJ.NY, CT and PA area. We offer classes that begin as novice (comparable to an associates program) and also offer courses for those who are “novice to expert” . A student may just need a refresher system to continue on the many opportunities they wish to explore. I have found students who just needed a little kick..
The educational series that are currently offered with CAES begin at the 100 level (Novice) to the 300 level (Expert).
The courses that are currently offered in the New Jersey classroom in Summit New Jersey are:
CAES 100: Event Coordination and Orchestration
CAES 100 is for the “novice” planner or coordinator that has little to no experience professionally and needs education with a hands on approach. For those who have not been currently planning, have little “know how” with the exception of assisting a friend, orchestration of their own wedding or partaking in various non-profit volunteer opportunities would be a perfect match for this course.
The program can be given both as a “private” 2 day course which is essentially more of an investment (alone time) or is given as a “public” course with up to 12 students. Both are considered an “investment” of time, knowledge and finances.*
While having a private instructor or educator can be of benefit for both the one on one and case sensitive for those who excel at their own pace, it is essentially the same information and definitely more enhanced with the one on one.
It’s truly considered personal choice and is taught by Samantha Goldberg directly. Both courses are generally taught by Samantha (me) herself, however, she does have special guests join for specific courses based on the application and ask of students when discussing the educational goal.
The 100 series covers many aspects of planning and or coordination. It will speak of the basic rules for the “Day of Coordination -Planner” and “Month of Coordination” packages. Please make note, these descriptions are changed based on the business owner and essentially mean the same thing (Coordinator, Orchestrator, Planning, Organizer, Event Manager, Therapist, Trained Monkey (ha) etc). This course does not cover anything outside what the novice coordinator must know to begin at this level.
The below list is just a very basic outline of the 100 series and is not limited to what is listed…
* Understand what the Wedding-Event Coordinator-Planner is responsible for
- * The essentials for ensuring your clients expectations are met
- *Understanding the various vendors, what their roles are and how they are essential in making the event work.
- * Week of events such as culture (Henna (Eastern Moroccan) Sangeet (Indian) Rehearsal Dinner (Typical and other American events)
- * Rehearsal Duties and participation at house of worship, venue and or various locations
- * The newest versions of the “Timeline, Structure of Day, Ceremony (common backgrounds and some basic education of culture), House of Worship-Venue and or other areas for the ceremony, and role of planner, receptions and the venue (current rules and how you might work better together), The catering crew/kitchen staff and their timeline, Catering timeline of the bride and groom at the venue (arrival, cocktail hour, dances, toasts, adding culture or tradition, cake cutting, Venetian(dessert hour and more).
- * Timeline for the client for the months leading up to the day and much more…
While the 100 series course is for one day, it is generally offered on a Saturday off season and begins at 10:30am until 6:30pm. All supplies (Books or Tablet), tablet for notes, pens, and etc are included in the fee.
Wearing comfortable clothing is requested. Please do not wear sweats, cutoffs or clothing that is not appropriate for an office setting. While our 1000sft classroom is closed off from Samantha Goldberg & Co, we do have clients that come in and meet with other planners.
Thank you in advance for respecting this ask.
We have 2 restrooms should we need them! Lots of fluid is great, not having enough restrooms, I would not have invested in this space without them!
Speaking of liquids, meals and beverages are also included. If you should have any allergies please let us know. A light breakfast and lunch along with afternoon snacks are offered. We generally offer beverages such as coffee, both regular and diet soda (Caffeine for those who need it)* Bottled water and juices upon your request. I have 2 Keurigs which can also allow for those who have their favorite Starbucks “fix” just bring the ground coffee, we have the pods!
Back to the description…
There is a substantial difference between a class and a course.
A class is a “one time” investment for 1 day which can usually last from 2 hours to a maximum of 8 hours. A course consists of weekly classes which are currently 1.5 hours in length and 6-7 weeks for the classroom, include tangible testing (Multiple choice and some small paragraphs with pertinent questions), office and lab-time in Summit’s meeting area, (Internship of 20 hours over a 3 month period) hands on with 1-2 weddings and or special events (lab-time and events are not combined) and for the certification, meeting with 3 of the 10-12 brides along with your classmates (if applicable) and receiving raw feedback(anonymous brides and handwritten information which is raw feedback). *Interested brides please call us directly at 908.219.4028 for more information. This is a “free service” however, since these are students, we would appreciate offering a small fee for gas/meals to our budding planners who are not making an income at this time. I know making sure it does not cost them money, is appreciated. Thank-You!
* The information above, while being scary to receive, will be the best feedback one can ask for. It’s not generally given this way for any individual who may not be a novice or other at a higher level of coordination. Many coordinators and planners often wonder after a “fabulous” meeting, why the client decides to work with someone else.
You must understand while this can be personal it’s not generally the case and more-so that another coordinator offered something they knew was most important. Getting along with your client is crucial, making best friends before the event is not going to ensure you get along. Sadly, if you were to have something go wrong at the actual event, that friendship could end. How would I know this? It happened to me. It really was a shame…as this bride was one the same wave..I tend to ride, if you’re savvy? I still think of her on occasion and wonder if I would not have crossed the line, maybe she would still be a friend. In some capacity maybe this was a good lesson to learn.
Your first lesson starts now…
“This industry has NO competition”.
If you believe that it does, you are not choosing the right career.
-You are different from the rest and you will succeed based on this philosophy. For those who “follow” and do not lead, you will essentially be like everyone else. Why would one expect to go upward if those around you are safe in the middle? They don’t succeed and nor will you. There is a reason we have followers and leaders. Not everybody can make themselves a tried and true “leader”. It’s just not meant to be, and that’s ok. It can be quite the headache.
Back to the description (Selective ADD my weakness and yet my strength). I'm stilll able to work with a variety of “hats” when I need to. What choice do I have? It's a "many hats" world!.
You will be chosen to work on their event, with a trained senior planner and an assistant that has not taken this course and is there for “YOU” to give direction.
Please note: “The Senior Coordinator/Observer” will not offer advice or anything pertaining to the event. They are there to rate your performance on the major areas one must know after taking our course. The bride will be completing a survey based on a written agreement (7-10 days after the event) which we have in place. You must receive a certain percentage (80% as a whole) based on the course final exam (if applicable), your attendance for interning, your skill-set when fulfilling the event observation and participation before the event and your clients feedback to receive certification.
Series 200 Ranges Novice to Expert…*course fee varies from $350-$1500 depending on supplies, paying another educator (floral and etc.) *Please make note on survey as to where you are with experience. The lower fee is generally for organizations that will only allow for 2-3 hours. ISES, ABC (Specific Chapters), NACE, WEVA and others outside the US.
CAES 200-205 Series
Is all about design!!! The “205” level is novice-midrange and “210” is midrange to expert. They all cover the color wheel, the pantone color scale and the dynamics on how to put the essentials together for the right design. Your client only knows what she brings to you based on magazines and trends. Your job is to find those who fit with this idea. This is not easy. It’s not just an issue with budget, but personality of those who “get” your client. This course or single class, can usually last for one day and can range anywhere from 3-7 hours. It generally covers areas such as Logistics of Design (hands on approach with a florist) , Color Wheel (Tying in color to work with the palate of the venue), vendors that match this theme or color etc…again, not an easy task, but can be accomplished with time and experience.
CAES “Series 215"
If you truly want to learn from some of the best floral designers the hands-on class is best for mid-expert level of expertise and not for the novice. If you are a beginner, then this particular class series 200 is the best training for you. Always keep in mind, credited courses are good, but most do not give you the hands on experience that you will need after the class is completed. Just keep that in mind.
Many classes do not even allow contact except through email once you have completed the accreditation.
Do you want to learn how to get into the industry the right way? Are you a bride who just got married and now consider yourself a professional planner? While this may be the best choice for you, one needs to have a strong foundation before they start! For those who are in love with the concept of becoming a planner after your own wedding, without proper training will only buy your 1st -5th event if you’re lucky. It will not only affect you but will essentially affect your networking ability especially with the venue/vendors in your area. I have watched it happen to many and can tell you, It’s a problem that will continue If those do not play by the rules.
What are the rules? Seriously, you don’t need me to tell you what I mean, right?
Let us teach you the right way to get started. Don't try to mimic what you see on TV the “Wedding” reality shows or stick with what you have online; you need to work with your own ideas to succeed. When you don’t have a basic or systematic method from an outside source, you will hang your career before you actually have one.
Let someone help you!
“Check The Sassi Planner’s Blog for upcoming updates.”
Look for specifics about each class:
1. The class (100 series) will entail how to get into the business, personality profiling, role playing, staying organized, how to market yourself, networking and how to find your special niche.
- 2. We will cover how to close each client and make your programs stand out! Role playing plays a VERY important part of this.
- 3. We will supply you with the proper tools to get started. What tools you ask? Timelines, ceremony lineups, venue timelines, budgeting spreadsheets, client information page and much more.
- 4. The class will be a one day seminar and will include lunch.
- 5. The course will be approximately 6-8 hours. You will receive a certificate upon completion. Not of this one day in classroom…But a mixture of in office and in the field” using the skills you learned. Completion essentially means after you have completed your day of coordination with assigned bride. Which after the internship and 1-2 weddings you will be given this client and yes, an exam to ensure you know exactly what you job is.
***You will be assigned a bride to work with as this becomes available. Your work with this couple will be done (pro-bono). This will be for day of coordination only.
This course can also be a great tool for brides who want to plan their own wedding but just need to get organized. If you have a group of "just" brides who want planning advice for their own wedding, we can make this course a special day you won't forget! This is also the least expensive way to plan your wedding with professionals who know what works! We will also give you several vendors that will work within your budget. Small investment and HUGE pay-offs for the DIY bride.
Please note, we try our best to separate planners from our brides.
The fee includes all materials such as questionnaires, copy of basic contracts( while we show an example of ours, you will be asked to sign a waiver this document will be returned before you leave), vendor lists, budget spreadsheets, time lines and much more!
You will also have the opportunity to work at an event where you will be able to work with Samantha or someone of “senior status” hands on in the field or at her office. This is based on our clients schedule, ours and specific events that allow for someone else to be there. We do need to get approval for participation with some of our clients. They are not usually ones that want to worry about coverage etc…
This “hands on/observation extra” is OPTIONAL/SEASONAL and is already included in the fee…it was not added with an actual monetary worth attached. That will be up to you to decide if it’s worth investing your time and learning more.
Sam on Tour!
For those who wish to have Samantha speak about various subjects that can be altered to fit your group or seminar. Bullet Points below list ” some” of the content which could/can be covered and certainly are not limited to other areas. I never want a cap! Let’s take your group to another level together!
This special format is not only for the wedding planning industry it’s applicable and customized for any sales organizations specializing in tangible/intangible means (Professional beauty products “specializing in” and marketing) Please call for a customized system which will increase sales production by 30-50% whether a team of 5 or 5000. Let’s make a difference and give you a raise today. I like the sound of raise…I like the sound of your call when you tell me about it even more.
The Question is….
Are you proactive or reactive? (908) 219-4028
If this is of interest to you and would like more information, please contact us at
firstname.lastname@example.org or call 908.219.4028.
Cash, Personal Check and Money order accepted. Payment plans are decided based on current financial situations. We are happy to announce we now accept Pay Pal as another option for payment. (There may be a small 1-3% transaction fee per Pay Pal)
Due to the high demand of internships we will only be able to work with 12 students per class.
We hope to see you! And let’s do this right the first time…You don’t want to go backwards!