There are many factors to creating a dream-come-true wedding. Some of which could possibly be replaced and solved with money. Still, there is one very important factor, which from the accumulation of my experiences, I accrue it to the factor of working with the right people.
Having the right people team up with the same mind towards the objectives and concept of your wedding is of utmost importance. I rank it foremost, ahead of budget. Whatever the budget of the wedding, if you have the wrong people working for you, it would probably turn out to be an unhappy and nasty turn of events.
Most people think that having the right people naturally equates to paying more for the best. Now, the general perception is that the best is always right. This isn’t really true! That being said, I have no criticisms on the best of the industry cause they are the best for a reason. They are good at what they do, and they have the experiences and network to back it up. But when I mean “right”, I meant the qualities of the people or businesses you choose to engage. These qualities aren’t just limited to the operating length of the company or the profile of clients and/or pictures that you see on their webpage. You have to learn more and beyond to find this pool of right people.
So who are the “right” people? I believe they should embody all, if not most, of the below qualities:
1) They love what they do.
To me, this is really important. When your vendors love doing what they do, they will do the best for you. Every work is a pride, which also means, you will get great quality control cause people who love doing what they do, will not give you slipshod work and pass it off. Also, loving what they do means that they will definitely do whatever it takes to get it right to your needs, taking each job as a personal challenge.
When I met our photographer Chris, he displayed a deep passion for what he does. He proudly showed us shots and described the process in getting it. When he shared with us how he founded the company, he took so much pride in describing to us how the company’s name “Moretopurple” came about. Seeing that gleem on your photographer’s face is an assurance he will never fail himself, and definitely not you.
2) They will tell you what you need, and what you don’t.
This is a very clear line between vendors who are out to earn every extra bit from you and those, who actually care to give you wise advice on what you really can save on. While you might think that they are too affirmative which may leave you with no space, they give you good objectivity in what is good for you and what doesn’t necessary work for you. You are sure that when you pay them, they know exactly what they are doing, you know exactly what they are doing with your money and that it’s worth it.
I have worked with my florist Justin for years. He is by far the most assertive florist I have ever met. Some brides might be intimidated but I found him really knowledgeable and good at what he does. He proposes ideas that he knows would definitely work for you, and if you show him a cascading bouquet, he would tell you in your face that it wouldn’t work unless you wish to scorn at your own photos 10 years down the road. He would tell you that you do not need pearls over your bouquet just because you saw that photo on the magazine cause he could tell that it wouldn’t fit your look and your dress. If you have a responsible vendor like Justin, you would be assured that you would look right, and not too over-the-top! Irresponsible vendors would secretly be gloating over their riches by selling you over-the-top ideas, topping this and that up, without telling you when is a good time to stop.
3) At the same time, they respect your ideas.
Brides are still brides. They have their own ideas of a dream wedding. When it comes to working with a vendor, have an open mind that someone with more experience would come in to share with you their thoughts or ideas. They may not always be spot on about your likes and dislikes, but they definitely give you more feasible options and points of consideration. At the end of the day, you still hold the ultimate choice and decision in what components you wish for your wedding. Good vendors respect that.
4) They care and would love to have you more than a client.
By now, you would have experienced that vendors do have to know some bits about you and your fiance before embarking on any conceptualization with you. Take note of the vibes and the kind of questions that your vendors may ask about you. There are vendors out there who only care about what you work as or which district you may stay in cause then they know if you are rich enough to pay them. However there are always those who sincerely want to engage you on a level beyond a client. They probably want to know how you two met, the love stories and struggles behind. They don’t mind listening to your worries and concerns, because good vendors are aware that they are in the people business and vendors love what they do, will naturally love talking to people and finding out more, simply because they aren’t so cold to just focus on completing a business transaction with you.
Relationships like these with the vendors go a longer way and it spreads beyond the wedding preparation. It brings joy to know you have created bonds of friendships throughout this journey instead of seeds of unhappiness.
5) They observe, listen and understand your character & style.
Good vendors will learn to appreciate you for your character. They also probably picked out your weaknesses and will learn how to handle you appropriately. As a planner myself, knowing my client’s characters helped me so much in knowing what ideas would tick them. A wedding journey is a fussy and intense path. If a vendor bothers to know you in-depth, it saves both of you the tolls, the unhappiness, the teething stage of having to deal with different characters, or differences in handling issues.
6) They watch out for dynamics between you and your husband, and when many are around.
Good vendors try to make you feel happy and assured all the time. But that cannot happen unless they learn to understand and watch the silent, implicit dynamics when different groups of people are around you. Watching out for dynamics between the husband and the wife would give a vendor a good understanding of the kind of conflicts, concerns, and priorities that the bride may have in every decision making. Acknowledging these multiple levels of consideration helps to assure the bride that her vendors have thought through much for her. While your vendors may not have the perfect solution for you, it is always beneficial to have additional support.
Good vendors will not try to come into any form of power play or create situations in which the bride finds herself really difficult to be in. A good vendor releases these tensions and brings the issue to a simpler level such that a happy negotiation can take place instead.
One of the first vendor I met during my own wedding planning was a Taiwan-based gown company which offered overseas photography deals as well. Most of the time I believe vendors do get some bad thoughts when I reveal that I am in the wedding industry, cause their faces change almost instantaneously. Perhaps they know they couldn’t sell me something I know that is unnecessary or they might brand me as difficult since I would more or less, absolutely know what I want. I happened to have the company of my fiance and my future mother-in-law and we allowed ourselves to be talked into visiting this bridal booth showcasing their works. While flipping through their albums, my FMIL commented with a smile on her face that she believes I would look great in any gown. Much to my horror, the sales representative replied to my FMIL, telling her that since I was a planner, I would definitely be demanding and wouldn’t be easy in just picking any gowns. My FMIL was told, that I would be spending alot since I know the tricks of the industry and I would definitely want the best things for myself.
I cannot describe how much my eyes rolled.
7) They don’t mind sharing stories about their own lives with you.
I love working with vendors who have nothing to hide, even details about themselves. When you work with a guarded vendor, things do get a little unnatural. When things are all transparent and cozy it is easier to work together cause then you don’t have to spend half the time wondering what your vendor actually really meant. You could fully trust them. I always believe that when people engage in heart to heart talk, they are always able to bridge relations a level deeper beyond roles and responsibilities.
8) They don’t shoot other vendors down.
Good vendors respect others, including their competitors. A basic measure of character and integrity. Most importantly if they could b***h about their competitors, they could always do the same to you.
A great wedding is one that gathers all the right people working together on a common concept. I hope i am getting there on my wedding journey, and so will you! 🙂