Let us begin with a caveat. There are more women working in the event industry than men. Whether it is the United States or the United Kingdom, a majority of the workforce in the event industry are women. This includes employees on payroll, independent contractors, subcontractors, employees of vendors and management positions. However, you would not see too many women in the event industry absolutely leading the pack of crowds. In contrast to the majority of women forming a formidable force in the event industry, the majority of leaders are men. That is the single biggest challenge for women in the event industry.
Unless a city is infamous for being safe, unless there are political, social or cultural turmoil in a given area and unless women are confined to religious constraints, there are really no challenges for women in the event industry today. It is safe, the workspaces are much more aware of gender differences and indifferences, certain niches of the event industry have been welcoming of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender as well. There is a certain level of stereotyping but that exists in every industry.
The trouble most women have in the event industry is the perception that they are great followers but not so great leaders. For obvious reasons, women are considered great followers. They are more organized than men, they can refer to lists or follow guidelines without any frailty, they can tick all the checkboxes when they are given a task and they can be very pursuant, patient and committed to get a job done. When tasks are delegated to women in the event industry, they excel and they do a better job than men. This has made women the perpetual assistants to the chief executives, the perennial intern, the lifelong confidant and the go-to employee when disaster strikes. But women are not usurping the big chair in the corner office.
Women don’t have a glass ceiling per se in the event industry. They simply have to claim the jobs for themselves. They must be able to brag more about their accomplishments. If you have seen women entrepreneurs as wedding planners and organizations, then you would realize how much they know, what they can pull off and with what élan. The moment it comes to showcasing the accomplishments, it comes down to the finer details and not hard facts. While it is perfectly desirable to focus on the finer elements of events to prove one’s prowess, it is also necessary for women to focus on hard cold facts and then exaggerating a little if needed.