By The Epic Wedding
The wedding industry is still largely made up of solopreneurs. It’s a creative, independent group of wildly enthusiastic people. They are happier than the stereotypical corporate worker, because they are forging their own way in an industry they genuinely love.
So it’s a joy to work with these individuals.
But sometimes, because the barriers to entry are low in this business, you run into people that lack the experience and skill to deliver top notch work. And unfortunately, this is more common with wedding planners than other wedding vendors.
The highly skilled wedding planners that I know carry enormous frustration about this, because we are also in an industry where our clients don’t have much knowledge going into the experience. So under-skilled professionals can look very similar to highly skilled ones.
Here are the red flags that point toward a planner lacking in experience and/or skill:
- Anyone who hasn’t run MANY, MANY weddings in this role. If they’ve worked less than 25, you can bet that a handful of those were friends’ weddings that didn’t have specific expectations. “How are wedding planners supposed to get experience then?” you might ask. Simple. By working for someone who has a ton of experience and tons of clients before going out on their own.
- Anyone who focuses on wedding DESIGN more than wedding PLANS. Lots of newbie wedding planners get into the business because they loved planning their own wedding so much. This means that they love all the pretties. And they want to do it again. There’s one problem with that – it’s YOUR turn to have fun with the pretties. The planner is there to do all the background work to make design fun for you. And this work is tedious, detailed, and time consuming. A
great wedding planner has appreciation for all aspects of the process equally. And they have a genuine desire to SERVE by taking the heavy load off of you and allowing you to have the fun.
- Anyone who says yes too quickly to Day-Of Coordination. It’s incredibly difficult to provide outstanding service in Day-Of Coordination when you did none of the planning. If you hire someone to fulfill this role and they agree without asking many questions, they may suffer from “helper” syndrome without having any of the leadership skills and experience to pull it off. A helper doesn’t do much good if they don’t (or can’t) really take control of the day and steer it’s outcome no matter what arises.
- Anyone who severely limits their services for no reason. For example, I’ve met many a wedding planner that won’t do setup, won’t help cleanup, won’t do design, etc. These are hobbyists who don’t fully understand the job. An experienced wedding planner has a team at their disposal for whatever tasks you need done, and they charge accordingly.
For all the highly experienced and highly skilled wedding planners out there, you make us proud to serve in this industry. For the rest…. well, ok.