26 July 2014

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Venue Vendor - Sam Owen


Meet Sam Owen, senior events manager at the Science Museum

Sam Science - SAT40256.jpgThey call me Mule. Because my name is Samuel – not because I’m stubborn...

I’ve been at my current job nearly five years.

My first job in the industry was at Alexandra Palace. I’m a massive music fan and the potential to get involved in some of the amazing gigs that they hold at the venue was very exciting.

The best advice I’ve received is to always have something to look forward to.

The best advice I’d give is that, with the industry still growing and so many opportunities available, the progression route in the events world can be rapid. I’d recommend anyone starting out to learn to walk before they can run, squeeze as much learning as you can out of each role and then move on. Don’t be in such a hurry to get to the top – if you’re not ready, you’ll be found out.
The next big thing in the industry is collaboration. I believe the days of working independently and grabbing ‘what we can, when we can’ are over. A collaborative system of ‘if we win, you win’ will become more prevalent over the next few years.

I get inspired by my team – without a doubt they are the most creative, hard working and enthusiastic bunch you could ever hope to work with. They make it all worthwhile.

I get annoyed by suppliers who move mountains to get on your venue approved list and then disappear as soon as the announcement is made. You know who you are...

The best event I’ve organised was our own promotional event ‘The Experiment’, which was a high-end molecular-cuisine dinner. The event successfully showcased both the traditional and the modern aspects of the museum and resulted in building better relationships with our current clients and gaining new relationships from the others. 

An event I dream of organising is a large-scale outdoor festival at the Science Museum site near Swindon, with a focus on sustainability and a vintage theme. The festival would culminate in a performance by The Kinks who would reform especially for the event!

I’m ‘most likely to’ be found making music. I never quite got over the disappointment of not making it big in a band but – after a sufficient amount of wine – at home I can still pretend. I love to play around with beats and strings and see what comes out. It’s usually rubbish, mind you!

My motto is: it doesn’t matter how much money you spend, it’s how much money you make.

Science Museum,
Exhibition Road, South Kensington, SW7
tel: 020 7942 4340, squaremeal.co.uk/science

This article first appeared in Square Meal Venues & Events magazine, spring 2011

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