‘It’s hard work, but immensely satisfying’
There was a time when occasions like weddings, anniversaries, birthdays and the likes were a home planned affair with family members pitching in, as and when necessary. Today, however, with theme and destination becoming the key words in such events, skilled and dedicated personnel who can visualize an event and execute it to completion are the toast of the event business. This is especially true in Goa, which is undoubtedly among the most preferred event destinations in the world.
Meet Nadia Dias. In the exciting world of event management, where things have to work with clockwork precision and one has to always be thinking out of the box, young Nadia is a name to reckon with. Having attained a degree in fine arts in advertising from the Goa College of Art in 2005, Nadia’s first tryst with event management was at CMM. Her enthusiasm, dedication and creativity were on full display, and she soon received various job offers and took up a position at Sunset Getaways where she worked for almost a year.
Her entrepreneurial streak, however, got the better of her and Nadia chose to pursue event management on a freelance basis. “The best part of this decision is that ever since I have started working on my own, I have been able to choose my clients and give each of them a dedicated amount of time. Client servicing, convincing clients and getting them to understand a concept and agree to it is, according to me, a herculean task. However, I hope to start my own production team shortly,” she reveals.
Nadia charges clients based on the size of the wedding and amount of work involved in planning it out. If I get a client through an event company, then I charge a fixed percentage on the total package. On my own, I normally don’t take weddings with a budget of less than `2 lakhs. However, event management is not as much about the money as it is about the experience I gain and the thrill,” she says.
The most memorable wedding Nadia has planned and executed till date was at Montego Bay in Morjim. “The theme was white, purple and green. The bride had a clear vision of what she wanted. She had, in fact, bought a range of unique items like crystal peacocks, candles, etc and left it to my discretion and creativity as to how to use them. I must confess, my creativity was tested to the fullest at this wedding and I came out with flying colours,” she says. On the flip side, she also recalls her worst moment when, at one wedding, she forgot to arrange for the bride’s bouquet. “It served as a lesson on the importance of focusing on minute details,” she says.
Her single most motivating factor, Nadia says, is her mother. “In the early days, even though I felt I wasn’t ready, she always retained her faith in my abilities. She has been my pillar of strength,” the youngster confesses.
“Today every other person claims to be an event manager. It isn’t all that difficult. However, in order to go beyond the usual event, one needs to be dedicated, patient and have a strong passion. Moreover, one needs to get contacts in place and constantly motivate themselves to perform. Even with me, during season I am fully booked but during off season I may not find enough clients,” Nadia says, elaborating on her profession.
Sharing some insider tips for aspiring event planners, Nadia says, “I cannot stress enough on the importance of patience. In this field, stress levels are almost always high. That apart, one also needs to be good at managing time effectively. Then there is the hard work. Sometimes, due to an event, one may have to forfeit sleep for days at a stretch. Also, an event manager needs to establish a good rapport and level of understanding with the client. As for the team, one needs to be both, firm and motivating in order to get the best out of them,” Nadia says. She adds that despite all the problems, it is the satisfaction one gets when the event goes through smoothly which is the constant motivating factor to always perform a step better