How to Become a Festival Organiser
Do you love going to Glastonbury? Are you excited about the next Reading and Leeds festival? Well, with a career as a festival organiser you could be in charge of organising incredible festivals just like them all over the world!
This exciting career is ideal for people who know how to have a great time and enjoy using their expert organisational skills to create events for like-minded people. This career can be a challenge, even to the most organised festival enthusiast, but the rewards are incredible, and there really is nothing like it. If this sounds like a career you would love, then read on to find out how you can become a festival organiser and break into the events industry.
What Does a Festival Organiser Do?
As you might expect, festival organisers are in charge of the organisation of festivals. This can be a live music festival, food festival, beer festival, comedy festival, or any other festival based around something people enjoy.
As a festival organiser, you will be responsible for the organisation of the event from concept to completion. This includes planning the initial idea, such as themes, stalls, line up, headliners, and location. You’ll also need to book venues, organize ticket sales, oversee the logistics of the event, manage the hiring of staff, and ensure health and safety protocols are met for a safe event experience for all.
A lot of your organisation will be delegating tasks and overseeing the overall organisation of the event, as well as talking to promoters and finding ways to overcome any problems you encounter. Essentially, your job is to create the best festival experience possible for customers.
How Much Does a Festival Organiser Earn?
The amount of money you earn as a festival organiser will depend on where you work and the type of festivals you organise. According to the National Careers Service, experienced events managers working on bigger projects could expect to earn £40,000 a year, while those who are just starting out would likely earn around £21,000 a year.
The salaries range from small to large due to the sheer difference between different types of festivals. Whereas smaller venues and local festivals could see you earning smaller amounts, larger festivals and particularly international festivals could see you earning around significant amounts.
You may choose to scatter smaller festivals across your year to manage, or go for one much larger festival that may take months to properly organise and coordinate.
What Qualifications Are Needed to Become a Festival Organiser?
To become a festival organiser, the most useful qualifications would be those in events management. Online event management courses are a great way of learning whilst working around your current work and family commitments, and you can earn a certificate or diploma to add to your C.V.
Other relevant qualifications include those in business, management, hospitality, and marketing, as these all contain elements that are fundamental to planning, organising, and promoting events people will enjoy. Have an understanding of festival marketing strategy, as well as how festivals are promoted via social media and public relations officers, is useful too.
By studying one of the many hospitality courses available online, you can learn how to organise hospitality events, the overall structure of a hospitality business, and how to manage people and delegate tasks. These online courses often do not have any previous experience or qualifications requirements, so they are a great way to get started in your career or prepare you for further qualifications.
Suppose you want to go on to study events management or hospitality at university. In that case, a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree can greatly increase your job opportunities and give you a more in-depth look at event planning. Often during these courses you will also gain real-world experience with work placement options and practical assignments such as putting on your very own events.
What Skills Are Needed to Become a Festival Organiser?
Event planning requires a diverse set of skills, from the practical to the personal. Even if you have not fine-tuned all of your event planning skills yet, you can build up your festival organiser skillset through practice, work experience, studying, and gaining more knowledge of the industry.
It is also worth noting that not everyone works in the same way, so if some of these soft skills don’t apply to you, then don’t despair. You just need to find a way of working which suits you. Some of the key skills for festival organisers include:
The ability to stay calm under pressure
Excellent organisational skills
Leadership and delegation
Health & Safety awareness
Excellent communication skills
Financial planning abilities (particularly budgeting and negotiating)
Career Prospects For a Festival Organiser
There are a variety of career prospects for a festival organiser, including the chance to take on everything from small local festivals to international, world-famous festivals.
You may begin by working for a company or organisation, and with experience and training, you can then work your way into working freelance or managing your own festivals, or taking on high-profile live events. There are also opportunities to go into senior events management, festival director, or becoming an events management consultant.