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Kickstarting Your Career in Event Management: Agency Roles vs. Freelance Opportunities

Want to break into the event management industry?

The booming market presents an exciting array of opportunities. One of the more crucial decisions you'll face is whether to start your career with an event agency or dive straight into freelancing. While both paths have their merits and drawbacks, there is a clear winner. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each objectively and find out why.


An infographic showing the comparison between agency roles and freelancing opportunities in the event management industry
Comparison of Agency Roles vs Freelancing Opportunities for Freshers in the Event Industry


The Agency Path

Structured Learning and Stability in Event Management



Training & Mentorship


Agency Role:

One of the significant advantages of starting with an agency is the structured training and mentorship you'll receive. Agencies often provide comprehensive onboarding programs, regular training sessions, and mentorship from seasoned professionals.


Freelancing:

As a freelancer, you're on your own. The learning curve can be steep, and without guidance, it's easy to make avoidable mistakes.



Project Management


Agency Role:

Working with an agency exposes you to all aspects of project management, from planning and budgeting to execution and post-event analysis. You’ll gain a holistic understanding of how events are run.


Freelancing:

Freelancers typically handle smaller projects or specific tasks within a larger event. While you’ll gain valuable experience, it may not be as comprehensive as what you’d get in an agency setting.



Client Handling


Agency Role:

Agencies provide ample opportunities to interact with clients under the supervision of experienced managers. This helps you develop essential client-handling skills.


Freelancing:

Freelancers deal directly with clients, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Without the safety net of an agency, any missteps are solely your responsibility.



Networking


Agency Role:

Being part of an agency gives you access to a broad network of industry contacts. These connections can be invaluable as you progress in your career.


Freelancing:

Freelancers must build their network from scratch, which can be challenging, especially in the early stages of your career.



Income Stability


Agency Role:

Agencies offer a stable income, benefits, and job security, which can be reassuring as you start your career.


Freelancing:

While freelancing can be lucrative, especially initially, it often lacks long-term stability. Work can be inconsistent, and income may fluctuate.



The Freelance Path

Flexibility and Independence in Event Management



Short-Term Gains


Freelancing:

Freelancers often command higher initial wages due to the nature of short-term contracts and urgent needs. This can be financially attractive when starting out.


Agency Role:

Agencies typically offer competitive salaries, but they may not match the high day rates of freelancers.



Flexibility


Freelancing:

Freelancers enjoy the freedom to choose their projects and set their schedules. This flexibility is a significant draw for many.


Agency Role:

Agency roles often come with fixed schedules and less flexibility.



Specialization


Freelancing:

Freelancers can choose to specialize in a particular niche, building a reputation as an expert in that area.


Agency Role:

Agencies provide a broad range of experiences, which can be beneficial early in your career but may limit immediate specialization.



Professional Growth


Agency Role:

Agencies provide a clear career progression path, with opportunities for promotions and role changes within the organization.


Freelancing:

Freelancers must constantly seek new clients and projects to grow, which can be both rewarding and exhausting.




Conclusion


Embarking on a career in the event industry can be both exciting and challenging. While freelancing offers immediate financial rewards and flexibility, starting your career with an agency provides invaluable training, stability, and networking opportunities. As you gain experience, transitioning to freelancing can be a lucrative and fulfilling choice. For freshers, however, laying a solid foundation with an agency is often the wiser path.


At Merakie, we understand the intricacies of the event industry and are here to support you in making informed decisions about your career path. If you’re passionate about creating unforgettable experiences and want to learn from the best, we invite you to explore opportunities with us. Feel free to reach out to us at hello@merakie.in or visit us on LinkedIn, Instagram, or YouTube to learn more about our agency and current openings.

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