Team Hickory were lucky enough to be joined by Innes Wilson, a 5th year pupil from George Watson’s College, for a week’s work experience. It was great to show her the ins and outs of running a busy events business and have her help plan, set up and deliver some of our events with us. It was a pleasure to have her as part of our team for the week and we’ve asked her to tell us about her experience…

Recently, I completed a week of work experience with Hickory, seeing how their well-established business is run. I have seen first-hand the amount of detailed planning and organisation that goes into events and got to be part of them too! My objectives for the week were;

  • To gain an understanding of the different departments and how they operate within the business
  • Seeing the business’ process of getting clients to the end product.
  • To gain transferable skills to take onto other businesses learning from the practical aspect of business rather than the classroom aspect.
  • To improve my business knowledge and perception of the commercial workplace.
  • To see how the business copes with economic challenges that face businesses in Scotland e.g. Brexit and factors that impact the business both positively and negatively.

The week I was at Hickory was one of the busiest of the year for the team with 10 events all running in just 5 days! It was very interesting to observe everything that happens in the run up to multiple events and how challenges are solved quickly.

I started the week working in the main office, completing a number of administration jobs and researching the history of an exclusive venue for the Board of Directors. On the Tuesday I worked with the logistics team in a hands-on role, packing kits to go to events. Their department is essential to every event as it’s crucial to have the correct items to ensure events run smoothly.

Wednesday and Thursday were spent with the Eskmills team who manage all events for Eskmills Venue including weddings, proms and celebrations. I created event packs ensuring all event schedules, table plans, menus and  any other necessary information was ready for the event manager for each event. I met with clients who were looking at the venue or had already booked it and contributed to the organisation and set up of a school prom which happened on the Wednesday evening.

My second day in the Eskmills office involved helping with staffing for a high-profile event, ensuring all staff had the correct documentation for it. I liaised with an entertainment provider, finding out more about their services and prices, and helped with deliveries for events later in the week. With the Sales and Event designer, I met with one client and went over the final details for her wedding whilst collecting props that she dropped off for her big day.

On Friday Hickory hosted an exclusive event for one of their corporate clients at a renowned venue and I assisted in the smooth running of the operation. Plus, I got to see the event in action from the team delivering equipment, props and food and drinks to the designers styling the venue and creating an unforgettable event!

My busy week working at Hickory went extremely quickly but I loved it. I was able to contribute to the planning, creation and overall delivery of events, ensuring that all preparation was complete. Every department’s role within the business is significant and the staff work closely with one another in the planning of events, ensuring they run without a hitch. The experience gave me a different perspective of how businesses are run and the work they do. I got to experience each stage of an event from initial enquiry to event delivery and worked with different teams to see the business from different sides. One of the big events I was involved with started to be planned a year before the event was due to take place. This shows the volume of planning and organisation required for large scale corporate events and it was fantastic to see the end result.

I am now part of the front of house team, working across a range of events in some incredible venues. I love being part of a busy team and being part of Hickory!