Last month the Event Leadership Institute created an online self-assessment test for event and meeting professionals to gauge their knowledge in the area of event design. Take the test and see how you score against 1,000 other event planners!
Ten questions were pulled randomly from a bank of 25 so that the type and level of question would vary from one person to the next. Questions covered topics such as color palettes, floral arrangements, lighting, event staging, and design aesthetics for both social and corporate events. After three short weeks and more than 1,000 respondents later, the results are in.
The average score was a 51 out of 100. More than 75 percent of participants scored between 30 and 70, while only 10 percent scored 80 or above. Ouch. While not every planner may possess the same caliber of skills as, say, David Stark, Colin Cowie, or Preston Bailey, scoring below 60 percent is a pretty good indication that perhaps your client knows as much as you do, if not more!
Questions with the lowest scores were those of a more technical nature, such as the appropriate size table or dance floor based on guest count, hanging heights for installations, space requirements needed for entry/exits, etc. In fact, only about 20 percent of respondents knew the maximum height of a non-elevated floral arrangement. This is a top priority if you don’t want your guests’ view to be blocked, or worse, have them move the centerpieces entirely!
While the online assessment scores are low, it clearly demonstrates that design goes much deeper than what can be found on Pinterest and Etsy. These are excellent places to look to for inspiration; however producing an aesthetically pleasing event that impresses seen-it-all attendees requires more. Today’s designers are expected to incorporate food and beverage, technology, and branding into their events, while finding innovative ways to create unique focal points and floral designs all within budget. Could this be a daunting task? Yes. Impossible? Not with the right education, tools, and training.
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