I enjoyed last evening's seminar for members of Central Oregon Wedding Pros. The subject matter was interesting but for me the most important take-away topic was Networking. Working cooperatively with other wedding professionals before, during, and after a beautiful wedding day elevates the quality of service from Studio Jay and all others involved. Vendors working together make for a smoother, less stressful wedding day.
When a bride and groom become engaged, they immediately start planning for their special day. When should we get married, where will the wedding be, who will we invite, what food do we want served, what will our colors be, etc., etc. The couple decides on a date and a venue, reserving a site that fits their needs and personalities. A wedding photographer is hired, a DJ, perhaps a caterer, an officiant, a videographer, florist. The bride purchases a dress, the groom a tux. All these things are painstakingly found and hired or purchased one item or one professional at a time; all scheduled to show up at the same place at the same time to pull off a couple's once in a lifetime event.
That's how Studio Jay participated in weddings many years ago. But now more experienced, we see ourselves as part of a cooperative team coming together competently and effortlessly to create the most memorable day possible. It's so much more fun to be at events now where we know other vendors. And it's especially rewarding to be able to recommend vendors who you know personally and personally know the quality of their products. I like feeling helpful to a couple who is still searching for flowers or a cake or videographer for their wedding and can make educated suggestions for them. The other night Tom and I were meeting with a wedding couple as they were hiring us to DJ their wedding. In conversation the bride mentioned that she did not yet have a dress but had an appointment at The Bridal Suite and Special Occasion in Bend. With confidence, I was able to tell her that The Bridal Suite has fabulous dresses and Paige and Brittany are easy to work with, that I was sure she would have a great experience shopping for a wedding gown there. Need a videographer? Call Stephanie at Ace of Hearts Videography. Looking for . . . ?
My advice to wedding professionals? Make an effort to meet everyone involved in a wedding, meet others at networking events, exchange business cards and get to know vendors in your area and their products. And my advice to brides and grooms? When you've made a decision to hire a wedding professional, ask who they've worked with and where they've worked in the past and if they have recommendations. Certainly all of us want to be successful in what we do by making your day even better than you imagined!