Kelsey Lawrence has interned at Convention Data Services (CDS) in Bourne, Mass., for the past three years as she worked toward her BS in business marketing and her MBA at Endicott College. Lawrence, who will join the CDS marketing department this summer as a full-time employee, shares her perspectives on recruiting young people into the events industry.
As a meeting organizer or show manager, you want to attract young professionals to the events industry. Millennials love travel, flexible schedules, and maintaining their work-life balance, making the meeting and events industry very attractive to them, but they need to know what opportunities are out there. Here are three recommendations for recruiting them:
1. Entice Young Professionals
Typically, Millennials look for internships during college to get a feel for what they want in a future career. These internships are usually found on job boards, internal college websites, or through word-of-mouth. One way to find an intern is to attend career fairs at nearby colleges and universities. Paid internships always receive more attention, but unpaid ones can be just as successful. Make sure the internship offers real-world experience and not just printing and filing papers. During my first internship at Convention Data Services, I worked alongside the marketing team to develop a rebranding strategy and helped implement the changes. It was such a unique opportunity that I can boast about forever!
2. Training Counts
Entry-level employees and interns are your company’s future. Positions should be available in each department to attract a wide variety of Millennials. Making sure these employees are trained correctly ensures that they provide quality work and grow with the company, ultimately reducing turnover and related costs. Continuing education and training programs are an excellent way to entice young professionals to grow within your company since Millennials love the opportunity to ask questions and gather information. Incorporating technology into these training programs can help attract Millennials and provide a way for them to effectively process information.
3. Retain Your Workforce
Millennials are focused on maintaining a work-life balance, while enjoying going to work every day. Having a flexible schedule is a factor in a millennial’s employment decision. An inviting, team-like culture is important as well to ensure that they feel welcomed and wanted. Internal growth opportunities are vital to Millennials when choosing a company because it means less change for them. Other benefits that are important to retaining Millennials include regular performance reviews, competitive pay, mentorships, and student loan assistance.
The events industry has offered me many opportunities and can do the same for other Millennials. Follow these recommendations and you’ll be well on your way to attracting Millennials to the events industry—and hanging on to them for the long term.