Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Wedding Reality’ Category

So, a new client is referred to you several months ago. It comes from a reputable source, and you’re feeling flattered.

You arrange a time to meet, but new client cancels at the last minute.

OK.

You sweep it under the rug, as she was referred by a former client whom you love.

First meeting eventually transpires after a few weeks.

She arrives late, clothing & hair appear disheveled, and her demeanor is bit out of sorts. To put it bluntly, she’s not really present.

She’s fussing with her blackberry, fidgeting in her seat, and unable to keep any level of eye contact.

No big deal, right? We all have off days, and she’s probably just really overwhelmed with all of the details & decisions that go into creating a wonderful wedding day.

Just keep on lying to yourself.

With no real focus on her part, the task at hand becomes BIG.

So, aren’t you dying to know what ends up happening?

Major Wasted Time. {surprise}

You spend so much mental energy talking this client down from odd-ball elements that make no sense, that you feel like charging the ‘referral source’ for the counseling sessions you’ve lined up for weeks.

In the end, the wedding is a total hodge podge.

Exactly as she wants it. And, she seems really happy about it all. Which in the end is all that matters.

Though, there’s still very little eye contact.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

OK, we just can’t take it anymore.

Whoever coined the term ‘Day of Coordination’ needs to shaken, not stirred.

It creates a false illusion of what is truly required to pull off a smoothly transitioned Wedding Day celebration.

Let’s think about this.

A wedding typically takes how long to plan? Let’s say 6 – 12 months.

But then the Bride wants to pay someone as little as possible {usually} to have them come in, Just for the Day, to pull it all together, and make it perfect?

Get Real.

Wedding Vendors are all about the relationships they build, with clients, staff, and amongst themselves.

We can’t absorb all the impressions, innuendos and details that you’re looking for – nor will we really get to know your personality, quirks or pet peeves – with one introductory phone call, a few emails, and a drive-by decor drop off date.

Rome wasn’t build in a day, and neither was your wedding.

Be Realistic. Hire a Professional. It’s one decision you’ll never regret.

Read Full Post »

Let’s set the scene…

We have 2 hours to transform one largish room into a ceremony area, for 160 guests, and set-up all the reception tables {hidden behind a floor to ceiling piece of drapery} with candelabras, flowers, favors, seat assignments, etc.

The clock is ticking.

We all know about crunch time. Some venues just don’t get it, and will provide minimal access time for vendors.

We’re pretty used to the 2 hour dash + decorate’ session.

We can successfully pull it off, with 15 minutes to spare before guests start to pour through the doors, as long as we’re ALL on board, with the same goal in mind.

That being a happy bride, a relaxed groom, a bridal party in waiting, and satisfied parents.

So, why have so many Venue Managers forgotten {or refused} to take the Sales Hat off when there’s already an event booked that day?

Now, we COMPLETELY understand wanting to sell your space, especially with everyone counting their pennies, and with growing competition out there.

But, guess what? Showing the space to couples, their extended family, and random people wandering in off the street WHILE the venue is booked is NOT COOL.

In fact, why are the bride + groom even paying for the space during that time if Joe + his fiancée Barbara can stroll through, ask as many questions as they see fit, and query the event planning staff about décor rentals, flower prices + cupcake flavors?  

The client has paid for the exclusivity and privacy the venue has promised them. Remember?

Oh, and by the way, they’re getting married in LESS THAN 2 HOURS!

So Venue Manager, read ’em + weep…

  • Get Some Tact
  • Do Your Job
  • Understand Current Client Priorities

Seriously, where the hell does your loyalty lie?

We can’t even blame the couples walking through, like deer in headlights, just soaking it all in. They don’t get the gravity of the situation before them. {But, they will on their own big day, and they’ll be pissed.}

This isn’t a bloody Open House.

It’s a beautiful couple’s Wedding Day, and they deserve your undivided attention.

If you don’t get that, then GET OUT. We have it more than covered.

Read Full Post »

It can be difficult to talk a client down from a decision that they’re excited about.

No matter how stupid it seems to you. They want what they want, when they want it.

And if it sounds like a Real Deal, well they’re even more likely to jump on it!

As a wedding vendor, you just have to learn to deal with it.

A recent client asked for my opinion on booking a band for her wedding reception.

She’d seen a band playing live at a local indoor venue, and instantly fell in love.

She approached them to inquire if they played weddings, and would be available for her wedding reception.

They said ‘Yes!’, and that for 3 hours of play, the total cost would $500. This was for a 5 piece band.

So, I asked about their experience, references and pricing.

The answers she provided were somewhat frightening.

  • They’d never played a wedding before.
  • They were unfamiliar with the duties of an MC, but had stated that would be part of the overall cost.
  • They didn’t seem concerned with the sound quality while playing an outdoor backyard reception.
  • They just threw a price out, to see if she’d bite. {which she did}

She thought it ALL sounded good. I wanted to be kind, but also for her to see the true reality.

I asked her point blank, ‘Do you want to be the Guinea Pig wedding for this band?

 She seemed a bit perplexed.

So, I just reiterated that they could provide no references, no guarantee of sound quality.  No nothing really.

She was already sold on the band though, so my only advice to her was quite literally……Buyer Beware.

  • Be sure you have a solid contract that includes a clause that if the booking is not fulfilled in full, as outlined, that there is room for a partial refund.
  • Confirm that they can guarantee a back-up or plan B if one of their band members becomes ill or lost.
  • Outline your expectations of their behavior, and interaction with guests.
  • Verify if you need a permit from the city for outdoor entertainment.
  • Do not pay for their services in full before your wedding day.

The last thing you need is a stumbling vocalist, a drummer who hits on your bridesmaids, and the police showing up to ‘shut down’ the festivities due to excessive noise complaints.

Fingers crossed for this reception.

Read Full Post »

Well, since you brought it up.

Yes. Yes, you are.

Those tantrums, unrealistic expectations, vent sessions seemed to be aimed at us – directly .

But what’s so interesting, is it’s no longer just a role exclusive to the Bride.

Some of the recent incarnations may be a bit surprising….

  • The Father of the Bride
  • The Mother-in-Law {who doesn’t understand boundaries, at all}
  • The Sister {who’s already married, and clearly knows how a wedding should go}
  • The BFF
  • And the personal favorite, The Onsite Venue Helper. She appears somewhat hung over, clearly disgruntled, and wants to make sure that her employer knows she’s miffed.  How will she get this message across?  By doing the least amount of work possible over the next 8 hours. Great.

So, if you can’t beat them – join them right? All kidding aside, walking on eggshells isn’t good for workmanship, morale or productivity. Letting people vent can be healthy for them, but they need to understand that they’re experiencing situational stress.

Talking about it BEFORE the wedding day is helpful.

You don’t need to walk around with a knife in your back.

Read Full Post »

Let’s set the scene…………

Both sets of parents are bitterly divorced, and remarried. There are step-siblings, step-cousins and step-grandparents.

Let’s face it – you feel like you’ve stepped in something, and you want to lose it, fast!

The dynamic of a family can be its greatest strength, or biggest downfall.

For your personal sanity, try to put it in perspective. You’ll be around this dysfunctional clan for a maximum of 12 hours {fingers crossed}.

Best approach?

  • Kill them with kindness  
  • Keep really busy {who says the presents don’t need to be rearranged?}
  • Smile and nod, while biting your tongue {this is a learned skill}

Most important? Don’t work a wedding solo.

You’ll need to play ‘Tag, you’re it!’ with a team member. Getting some downtime to effectively deal with the onslaught of complaints, drunk guests and tireless questions about when the cake’s going to be cut is a must.

~Special Note to the Brides~

Please don’t throw us under the bus.

If you know your Dad is gruff as hell, and isn’t a ‘people person’, we’d appreciate a heads up.

Every family experiences emotional highs + lows during a wedding celebration.

We’re used to dealing with high stress situations, and can mitigate even the touchiest situation.

So, do yourself a favor. Don’t take their ‘complaints’ or ‘concerns’ as gospel.  

We always have your best interests at heart, and aren’t interested in stirring the pot.

Read Full Post »

Guest #3

Here she comes……… Debbie Downer. Except that she’s morphed into a wedding guest that’s closely related to the bride.

It appears that NOTHING is going to be good enough at this celebration.

Just know that complaining isn’t a characteristic of this guest, but her personality in its entirety.

Her level of overall dissatisfaction changes to fit the situation.

In fact, she probably doesn’t approve of the bride’s choice of dress, food, venue, or time of reception. And she certainly can’t believe that the family would actually spend this much money on one night. What a waste!

This is also the guest that will view you as their personal assistant/gopher.

Get ready for, ‘Could you bring me another napkin?’, and ‘Can you touch up my wine?’, or the ever classy, ‘Could you get the Bride’s attention? I’m planning to leave soon.

Only one word comes to mind.  Bitch. Speechless.

So, how to remain the Strong Diplomat?

  • Listen intently, and attempt to resolve their issues.  But NEVER agree outright.
  • Try to let it roll off your back {yes, easier said than done}.
  • Keep your opinions under wraps. Always remember, this is ALSO the guest that will ‘Report Back’ to the bride & groom.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »