Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A neon sign burning brightly

Last week, CNN described Anna Nicole Smith’s life as a neon sign that burned brightly then flickered, buzzed and burned out. Personally, I think that analogy is better fitted to the wedding planning career. Statistics show that most wedding planners burn out within the first two to three years, and that’s because most wedding planners neglect to run their businesses like a business. I often see past brides high off the planning of their own wedding setup shop as wedding planners. Their websites say things like “I caught the bug while planning my own wedding” or “After my wedding everyone complimented me on my great taste and unique ideas.” Then they take on clients and give, give, give and the clients take, take, take and before you know it flicker, flicker, buzz, buzz, burnout.

The wedding planning career does require, among other things, a great big love for weddings and the desire to help couples enjoy this major life event. It also requires a lot of resilience, self-confidence and business acumen. It’s the former you’ll need to draw upon when wedding guests treat you like a servant and when your foot is numb for days after a 20-hour wedding shift, but it’s the latter that will keep your sign burning brightly for many years to come.

Side note: I ran into a former groom this morning, and he was looking good. "How's the business going?" he asked. "Great!" I wanted to say pull up a chair this could take a while. It's clients like him and his wife that make this gig worthwhile.

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