I have listed my top seven secrets for being a credible wedding planner. I also talk about obstacles and uncertainties I have encountered as a wedding planner. I will offer advice on dealing with unusual demands, and how to deal with a bride that may be less than cordial.
One of my hardest moments of staying composed was when a bride told me her horse was part of their wedding party. This is one of many unexpected, but humorous, surprises that may be presented to a wedding planner. When I was told that a horse was part of their wedding party, I had to stay composed, smile, and refrain from laughing hysterically. I had to make sure that the bride felt comfortable with me when she made this request. I also had to make the bride feel reassured that her request was normal, not an easy task. Once you plan a few weddings, you will find many brides that will want to have their pets incorporated in their wedding day.
A credible wedding planner will always have references. I always bring references from previous brides that were happy with my services. I also have references from vendors that have had a positive experience working with me. I have had a few brides ask if they could personally talk to previous clients, and I was glad to accommodate them with the contact information. I try to give the bride whatever she needs to reassure her I am the right pick for a wedding planner.
A wedding planner needs to be organized with charts and vendors available to accommodate any budget. I have folders organized by wedding budgets, and vendors that can accommodate most budgets. If the bride has $8,000 to spends, then I choose the folder that has this price range. Also, I find it crucial as a wedding planner to have a list of backup vendors in case one fails to live up to their obligation before the wedding.
Make the Bride Feel Like She is Top Priority
If the bride calls or e-mails me, I make sure I answer her calls not my assistant. This makes the bride feel important, and that she is top priority. This can be stressful at times, but crucial in developing a trusting relationship between me, the wedding planner, and the bride-to-be.
Allow the Bride to Suggest Vendors
A bride may have vendors that they like, but ones I currently don’t work with. I always try to be flexible when choosing vendors for the bride’s wedding, as long as the vendor is reputable and can work within the bride’s budget. A bride should be weary of a wedding planner that isn’t flexible with this. Sometimes a wedding planner may get a bonus or some kind of incentive if they use a certain vendor. This is not in the bride’s best interest, and should make a bride cautious if a wedding planner doesn’t want to be flexible on the vendor choices for their wedding.
Dealing With Unexpected Requests
A bride may want to have her pet or another unusual request as part of her wedding. I try to help the bride to incorporate her unusual request into her wedding. I also try to do this so that the wedding stays tasteful, and keeps the bride happy. If the request is impossible, I needs to quickly think of alternatives that will please the bride, and keep in theme of the bride’s request. This is an important step in building a good relationship between the bride and me, the wedding planner.
Dealing With a Not-So-Pleasant Bride
Once in awhile you may encounter a bridezilla. This is something that can make or break a wedding planner. I have experienced all levels of unpleasant brides, and I try to deal with a bridezilla calmly, and in a manner that shows the bride that I can handle tantrums and sometimes fits. The only time I find this unacceptable, is when the bride is verbally or physically abusive towards me. In this case, I talk one-on-one with the bride about respecting me as her wedding planner, and proper etiquette that needs to be shown to me.
Unexpected Obstacles and Mishaps
Often a wedding planner needs to be prepared to deal with mishaps, such as forgotten rings, rips in the bridal gown, and the occasional fallen wedding cake. I also enter into each wedding ready to fix a hem, cake, or fix a bride’s makeup in a pinch. If it is something I can’t fix, I try to have someone on standby that can help me. A wedding planner wears many hats, and my job isn’t done until the wedding is over. Once in a while I make a mistake, because we are human. A good wedding planner will own up to their mistake. Apologize to the bride, then make it right.
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