During one of our staff meetings, my boss asked me to say a few words about my experience as the Project Manager of Innovation Conference 2016. For a second, I was shell-shocked because I didn’t know how to put all my thoughts and emotions into words. There were so many moments and lessons playing around in my head, and it was almost impossible to say anything that gave it justice. It meant a lot to me.
Just a backgrounder: Ever since last July, I began working for Fiera de Manila, Inc. as a Marketing Assistant/Project Manager. Innovation Conference was a project turned over to me and was essentially, the first project I handled.
Innovation Conference 2016 was a prestigious learning event attended by C-level professionals. It was a big deal, to say the least, and I was a newbie to the industry, a potato. (Half of the time I was working on it, I tried not to dwell on the gravity of my responsibility so I could continue functioning.)
I learned a lot from this experience. Here are some of the lessons I got for almost three months of working on this project:
- Make mistakes but never the same mistake twice. Though I had experiences with organizing stuff in school, I didn’t really have an industry benchmark to guide me. I basically had little to no knowledge of what to do, so naturally, I did some things wrong. It took bravery to swallow reprimands, honestly, but once I got over that, I was able to focus on the task at hand and was able to learn.
- Have a team you can trust. I’m glad that I had the FMI team to back me up. They are veterans at what they do and they’re willing to help whenever I need it. I can also always ask questions about things I don’t know how to do yet and they won’t judge or laugh at my innocence.
- Nothing goes perfectly in events. Shit happens. Be flexible enough to accommodate the changes. (You will be driven insane otherwise.)
- At the end of the day, whatever happens, the event will always end. (Words of wisdom from my dad; mah mantra.)
I’m glad I was trusted with this project. It exhausted me but the stress was worth it.
Here’s to more good experiences!