I am currently onsite working on a one-of-a-kind event that we have been planning for the past year. Our wonderful clients wanted a destination wedding in a unique venue by the water in Florida. As I prepare for what promises to be a magnificent event, I must also be the calming voice that advises our clients on what measures can be taken should mother nature put a wrench in their plans for an outdoors fairytale wedding in an open environment. Of course, our back-up plans have been in place for months but there is always a possibility that even those plans may include unforeseen changes or requests.
As you can imagine most planners see rain as a four-letter word, most especially when their clients dream of a ceremony that incorporates the outdoor environment. This is the moment when planners must have a good head on their shoulders and should be able to troubleshoot through the requests that come his or her way. As many of us face these challenges, I thought it would be beneficial to share some of my best practices during times like these:
Stay Calm: Keeping a cool head will help you to strategize and also helps you manage your client and the crew in a smooth manner. Your attitude sets the tone. If you are calm and in control your clients and crew will feel calmer. Staying positive is also massively important.
Be Flexible: Life offers us challenges. Fighting things we cannot change is a waste of time. Instead, find a solution.
Get All Of The Information: Overreacting before you understand the facts is the fastest way to create unnecessary chaos and stir up misunderstandings. Yes, there are times when changes can seem extreme until you are able to sit down with the team and understand what it takes to get them done.
Get Confirmation Before Addressing Clients: It is essential to understand how feasible any changes are before communicating next steps to your clients. Keep in mind that our clients are expecting for us to come up with solutions despite the level of complexity of the requests. The word “no” should only be uttered when we are absolutely certain something cannot be done.
Work With Your Team, Not Against Them: There is always a solution when you put your heads together.
Alert All Involved Parties: Don’t forget to communicate changes with your venue and make sure to get all of the necessary approvals before placing orders or making significant changes to your original plans.
Give Your Best: What does this mean? Doing everything you possibly can to please your clients.
With a happy heart,
Kathy Romero is the Director of Wedding Planning For Preston Bailey Designs. She shares her thoughts and advice on Preston’s Blog every Thursday.
(Photo Courtesy of Kismis Ink)