Before my time as ‘Rey the IBCoM student,’ I did a brief, well not so brief, 6 month long internship at a premiere event management firm in Lusaka, Zambia, called R&G Events. R&G Events focuses on corporate advertising, media campaigns and event management. Furthermore, they own key advertising screens throughout Zambia, which they can lease out to other corporations. They also created their own model agency to provide models for corporate promotional events. When I worked there, it was still a relatively small company with a total workforce of about 20 people, separated into the tech team, the design team and the model agency. During my time as an intern there, I switched between these departments, but I spent most of my time in the design team.
This internship required a lot of effort in terms of being able to drive long periods of time, as I had to run around the city to meet with clients or to pick up banners, signs and other promotional items. I didn’t mind doing it, because the work was always exciting. My biggest achievement in the company was successfully running my own event for a soft drink company, called Vivo. The organization of this event included meeting with the client, working out their demands, sourcing a venue for the event, creating promotional items and finally making sure that the target audience, in this case students, would attend the event.
It wasn’t all work though, so don’t worry; once your shift is done, you will have a lot of time to enjoy the fruits of your labour and you can join the party with the highest level of VIP access. The travelling wasn’t too bad either, as I was able to visit cities I would never have travelled to by myself. I experienced more of Zambia than if I had taken a desk job, which made all the hard work worth it in the end; there isn’t much that compares to a Zambian sunset in the mountains, trust me.
Patience and people skills are the two most needed skills in the event management; everything that can go wrong, will go wrong, so you need to be able to calmly handle crazy situations, angry clients or even drunk guests, without damaging the reputation of the company. Having a huge 6ft 7 bouncer on your side helps in most cases, though. I would say that my experiences handling day events, night events, mall promotions and advertising campaigns really put life into perspective and made me a lot more motivated to start IBCoM. If you’re planning on doing an event management internship this year, I urge you to give it your all, as few jobs are as satisfying and free as events management. However, be prepared to put the work in, because, as with most things in life, without effort you will not succeed.