A career in B2B events can seem unorthodox for both young and experienced professionals, yet, those who explore the industry can find themselves with a path that is both rewarding and full of growth opportunities.
Generally, working in an environment that deals with high-ranking professionals consistently offers you a number of benefits and perks that are truly unique to the industry. If you’re curious about what those benefits are, read on to find out!
Understanding The B2B Event Industry
B2B-based events is a unique industry that’s focused on solving the challenges and issues that c-level decision-makers face by giving them a platform to meet and connect with like-minded executives.
Through these platforms, guests and attendees can expand their network, look for new business solutions, gain industry insights from expert speakers, and connect with solutions providers in 1-to-1 meetings to establish profitable partnerships.
Harvard Business Review Analytic Services notes that on average, organizations host 73 B2B events annually, making B2B a sizable professional industry. In fact, Management Events alone conducts over 180 events a year in Europe and Asia, indicating how active the market is for high-level industry platforms within those regions.
But as a professional who is looking to expand their horizons, what can a career in B2B events offer that other industries can’t?
The Benefits of Working in B2B
1. Meeting and networking with high-level decision-makers
Part of the work you do in creating these events is conducting research with C-levels from different industries, inviting them to attend and speak at events, and connecting them in face-to-face meetings with solution providers.
As such, you have the unique ability to meet and connect with CEOs and other senior executives from different industries and to create a network of high-level contacts. The importance of networking should not be discounted when it comes to career growth, especially since 80% of professionals consider it to be important for career success based on a report by Linkedin.
Business leaders and decision-makers are the main demographics for B2B-focused events and being a part of that platform offers you the benefit to meet, network, and build a business relationship with them.
2. Acquiring a valuable and widely applicable set of skills
People often ask, “what do event organizers do exactly?”
In short, a little bit of everything.
From conducting industry research, dealing with speakers or selling sponsorship packages to solution providers to organizing the event on-site– to be successful in this career you need to have a unique mix of hard and soft skills.
For example, being part of the sales team in Management Events encourages you to have high levels of negotiation and communication skills as you’re constantly dealing with solution providers explaining them the benefits of our business model and selling our sponsorship packages. However, it also means you need good analytical skills – you have to understand the challenges and pain points of different industries and event attendees and know how each particular solution provider can help there – that’s how you convince them to support the event.
Project teams are tasked with creating agendas that are relevant to the industry and appeal to the attendees. This job requires great research skills because only through market research you can discover urgent topics for the event and identify most skilled speakers to cover these topics. Working with the participants also requires research skills – to learn about their challenges, and negotiation – to convince them to join the event.
Being in the event management team you learn a lot about customer experience, working with venues and vendors and creating a splendid event experience for your event participants.
And all the functions will definitely require from you time management, organizational, great people skills and high level of creativity and improvisation – because in B2B events everything has to be on the highest level.
As such, the work you do provides a great environment to hone your ability in negotiation, communication, organization, and other skill sets applicable in any industry and role. Learning and mastering these skills are useful for professionals of all levels as they can be applied in other career paths.
3. Knowledge of the latest industry insights and news
Pitching to CEOs or solution providers to attend, finding the right sponsors, or developing keynote presentations for a B2B event, all of it requires you to research the latest trends and technologies in the industry.
Whether it be the tech industry, human resources, or even supply chain management, working in B2B events lets you be in touch and familiar with numerous deep-dive topics and industry-specific insights.
Plus, these platforms bring together visionary leaders and industry experts to share their knowledge, giving you access to exclusive resources that are usually walled-off with a high barrier-of-entry.
4. A role that matters and a position for success
For professionals who are just starting out, it’s important to find a first job that allows them to do work that actually matters or build up experiences with real-world applicability. Burning Glass’ report on the underemployment of college graduates highlights the importance of choosing a career that allows for professional growth.
Working in this industry, you’re often placed in a role that allows you to work on big projects and make contributions that matter to your client and organization. And since B2B-focused events deal with international projects, you’re constantly working with top management and the biggest companies.
Being part of the sales or project teams, understanding the products and its selling point, meeting with potential clients, preparing the agendas for all the events, all the work you do, you can see its direct impact on the end product – the event you are working on and thus, the company’s performance and profits. Instead of feeling like a cog in a machine, you can be part of a corporate culture that gives you a platform to shine and be rewarded for your contributions.
In essence, YOU are important to the company and its clients.
Bonus Point: Seeing the results and attending fun events
One of the unique perks of a career in B2B events is being able to see the results of your work first-hand. In most other industries, you rarely get a chance to see the fruits of your labour, but in B2B events you’re able to attend the events that you’ve worked on, meet your clients face-to-face, and personally hear their feedbacks.
In addition to that, B2B events today are much more exciting with creative onsite elements such as acrobats and dancers or inspiring speakers like Mount Everest climbers or the World’s First Cyborg.
A career path in B2B events might seem unconventional, but if you want to network with high-level executives, learn a wide set of skills, gain the latest insights and trends in the industry, and be in a role that matters, then it’s a career path worth exploring.