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Managing events, Prince style

SANGEETA BAROOAH PISHAROTY talks to event management guru Prince Singhal who tells us how to stage events.

WHEN THIS Delhiite took up event management as a self-started career option in 1991, he made an initial profit of just Rs.300! It was a New Year's Eve party he had organised for his first client at Hotel Ashok here. He had to raise a loan of Rs.21,100 besides of course, exhausting Rs.10,000 saved from many a summer job.

Over a decade after, Prince Singhal says, he very well remembers those days. Though never with regret.

"Profit-making was not prime in my mind then. That night, I wanted to manage the event professionally. My aim was to bring on a platform where the client hosting even a kids' party or a wedding, gets what he asks for in real terms and not just promises," says Prince. Having encountered "roadblocks like what do you mean by event management" more often than not in taking his career ahead, this management graduate from Delhi School of Art and Commerce though, never said quits. "I used to tell my clients that you give me 5 per cent of the funds earmarked for your promotional activities and I shall deliver. It took a lot of time to make people understand my point," he says. In 2001, exactly a decade after he had set sail on his career path, he opened the International Center for Event Marketing and Management (ICEM) in the city. A few hundred students trained for the job are already at work.

From introducing brands to helping set up discothèques to bringing in MNCs and more, Prince had been having his high for some time now. Profit that had once eluded him initially, is his close companion now.

A guidebook

But the latest event that happened in his professional life is his maiden book, "Staging Events" published recently. Brought out as a guide to those looking at event management as a career option, for corporates willing to know what happens behind the curtain and even housewives wanting to host a successful children's party, Prince says, "it is one of the many things" he wants to give back the society.

"I travelled to 10 States across the country in 2001 wherein I met people who had no idea how to organise a show professionally. So I came up with the idea of opening my institute which has been training batches of youths wanting to be events management professionals. But I want this to spread more. Since I can't reach all, I thought of penning down this guide book," says Prince. Full with lay-outs of known auditoriums of Delhi, well-demarcated with logistics, detailed legal points, site management and more, spelling out tips to remain focussed on the event being organised, the 244 paged book worth Rs. 960 could genuinely be a copy for those interested in the field.

"We have 2,450 event management companies in the country now. But they are mere numbers. While one dies after a month, another takes birth. But what is lost in the process is the ability to deliver the goods and be honest with the clients," says this Young Achiever's Award winner.

Next in the pipeline is "a huge project" he is busy with regarding events management. Though not ready to talk about it yet, he promises that it is not another book.

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