Preston Bailey Spotlight Series: Gail Johnson
July 5, 2013
In today’s Spotlight Series I am pleased to profile Gail Johnson, founder of Gail Johnson Weddings, an event design and planning company based in Decatur, GA. Gail has been profiled in Ebony Magazine, The Knot Magazine, Martha Stewart Magazine and others.
I am so pleased all of you have enjoyed this series as much as I have putting it together. I really enjoy doing my part, however small, to build stronger community and getting to know our colleagues on a more personal basis. As always, feel free to submit yourself in the comment section below. Be sure to give us your company name, website, and why you’d like to be spotlighted. You must also confirm that you have “liked” our PB Facebook page.
Have a wonderful weekend!
So when did you discover that working in events was your passion?
Passion is a powerful motivator. It drives focus, fuels resilience, and solidifies determination. I planned and directed my first wedding when I was 18 years old. From that moment on, I have never lost this passion. It has been a constant throughout the years. Discovering my passion meant discovering more about myself and finding the true essence of fulfillment in life’s journey.
What did you do beforehand?
I had a very successful corporate career in operations/logistics, which afforded me the opportunity to travel and work in cities such as Paris, London, Amsterdam and Guadalajara. Transferring my skill set to a new industry became a valued asset. But, I have to say that I was energized by the challenges of being an entrepreneur in such a great industry.
Tell us about your biggest success in event planning.
My biggest success was having one of my weddings filmed for WeTV Platinum Weddings. The bride had two requests: one was to have her wedding published in a magazine (Life & Style), and the other was to have their wedding featured on Platinum Weddings. I was able to accomplish both requests with ease. I have always striven to create extraordinary experiences that fulfill the dreams of my clients.
I believe that each of us have something unique and special to offer clients. What do you feel sets you apart?
I always look for ways to be a creative resource for clients. I have built a reputation as a trusted expert and advisor. Being an industry expert plus exceeding my client’s expectations with superior custom services creates legitimate “win-win” results.
Working in events is often a full time job, especially when you are committed to your clients. How do you find that balance between your personal and professional life?
Indeed, business is business, but I had to learn to establish boundaries and achieve a balance between my professional and personal life. I’ve learned to enforce business hours and no longer work on Sundays (what I call no-technology day). I turn off my phone and computer, and put off all work-related business until the next business day.
Finally, describe the event of your dreams. What is the budget, theme, and location?
My dream wedding would have an unlimited budget. A Balinese themed wedding held in Bali, Indonesia, surrounded by a lush natural landscape, tranquil gardens with palm trees, and the gorgeous Indian Ocean would be ideal. I have always been drawn to cultural and multi-cultural weddings that combine unique sacred celebrations and ethnic traditions. And who wouldn’t want to coordinate a wedding in paradise!
Photo Courtesy of Gail Johnson