A Day in the Life — Catherine Lee


Business Development Manager, Event Management
National, New Zealand

8am: I’m at my desk – I like to arrive at work a bit earlier and look over my day. First off I have a cup of tea and review my appointments and tasks for the day. Like most BDMs in event management, my life is ruled by my diary.

I then clear my emails and follow up with any clients as required. My role is all about building and maintaining relationships, and providing clients with information they need very promptly. I quote on and confirm events, then hand them over to our event planning team to organise.

10am: On to my projects. These may be planning a new marketing campaign, reviewing financial budgets or planning our next attendance at a trade show.

Today I’m booking sales calls. Each month I take two days and go to see clients in their offices – the aim is to secure new and return business for our venues. A Friday is always a good day to do this, people are excited about the weekend and are much easier to book appointment times.

11am: I take the opportunity to move away from my desk and get a coffee. I try and time my coffee break with a client meeting, making the best use of my time. Even though the majority of my clients are based in other cities, I try to catch up for a coffee or lunch with a client each day if they are in town, or when I am conducting a venue inspection for a potential client at one of our event venues.

11.30: Critical time of day where I prioritise sending quotations for events, calling clients and following up on quotations already sent. There is 
always negotiation involved when you are dealing with the three big entertainment and event venues in Christchurch!

1pm: Lunch. If I’m not lunching with a client I’ll grab a bite to eat in the café and take the chance to enjoy some sunshine.

1.30pm: Back to my desk and again making sure any enquiries are followed up ASAP. On to another project, which is looking 
at the design for our next trade show, 
we need a fresh stand and approach to attract conference and event bookers.
The trade show will be at one of our venues, so I need to make sure the whole venue is impressive and up to standard.

3.30pm: Off to accounts.

4pm: Make sure all enquiries for the 
day are followed up on, as the afternoon goes on I have emailed off a number 
of contracts for upcoming events.

5pm: Plan the next day’s work – as it’s a Friday I allocate time for next week’s projects as well. If I need to, I stay later and finish off my work. I do find though that if I plan my day properly and work smartly, I am able to leave by around 5.30pm each day. Work life balance is important!

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