Is the DJ you’re considering hiring an experienced professional, or a hobby DJ?
For some parties, all that’s required is someone with DJ equipment to turn up (some of the cheaper ones might not even do that if they get a better offer!) and play music. In this scenario, any reasonably proficient DJ will do for you.

For a corporate event where you’re wanting to reward employees, help them bond or unwind during a conference, or impress clients and say thank you, you’re going to want someone who is a true professional. Weddings and other one-off celebrations are another example where you won’t want to take the risk on a hobby DJ.

How can you tell a really professional DJ from one who isn’t really treating his DJ work as a profession? That’s the purpose of this article.

DJ Richard interacting with guests at a weddingWith sufficient experience and additional training, a professional DJ will be able to act as your entertainment representative, smoothly directing and guiding your celebration from start to finish allowing you to relax and enjoy the party. With experience comes confidence and knowledge too. Many things can happen during an event- some are expected, others are not. The experienced professional has the ability to handle any situation which may arise and will be able to react spontaneously to correct the problem as if nothing ever really happened.

The seasoned professional will also know how to introduce interactivity into the night in a tasteful and energetic manner. With this same experience, your entertainer will read the crowd and intuitively know what music to play at what time. A well experienced DJ/MC can give you some wonderful ideas for personalising your event to really reflect your personality and style.

As we addressed in part 2, ask DJs what training they’ve done to improve their service in the last 5 years. Have they completed any industry-specific training courses or workshops? Have they attended international DJ seminars? Are they consistently improving their service and skills? What do they have in place to ensure that they are continuing to offer an improved service?

Is your DJ running his (or her) business as their primary occupation and source of income? If they are working in another job, or are doing the DJ thing as a ‘hobby which pays’, chances are that they won’t be as prepared, dedicated, or focussed on YOUR special event. Since December 2007, DJ Richard has been a full-time professional DJ. It is his sole income and his permanent career. Because of this, it is critical that he is focussed, dedicated and prepared.

Does the DJ have professional documentation, such as event planning guides, proper contracts and a well-presented, up to date website presence? Are they GST registered? Are they operating their business as a dedicated limited liability company? Do they have a seperate business bank account? Is their correspondence handled in a business-like manner? If not, it might be because they don’t treat their business as a profession.

In the next post, we’ll look at what type of music they provide and will they play requests?

Wedding DJs with the crowd dancing (black & white)