Communication can make or break any relationship, this includes the relationships with your wedding vendors. Clear communication can mean the difference of a dream like planning process or a nightmare come true. Here are some tips that will help you navigate the roads of communication with your vendors.
Brides, like boy scouts should always be PREPARED. Go in to any meeting or consultation knowing what you’re looking for or at the very least your budget. One of the biggest ways to cause confusion is by not being clear about your budget and needs. If you communicate clearly with any vendor you will be able to get what you need. The thing is, your vendor is in this business for a reason, they want to help you plan the wedding of your dreams, and it is far easier for them and you if you go in letting them know exactly what you’re looking for and what your budget is. Your caterer won’t show you a menu that costs $200 a head when your budget only allows for $50 a head. They don’t want to waste your or their time, and they don’t want you to fall in love with something you can’t afford and as a result end up disappointed in what you can afford.
HONESTY is the best policy… If you aren’t sure about something, be forthcoming about it. At the end of the day you are all working towards planning YOUR wedding, so be honest about your likes and dislikes. If you aren’t crazy about peonies, tell your florist. There is no need to be overly accommodating with things that you don’t like or want. Also, be honest with yourself…. What are you looking for in your wedding? I always ask my clients what the first thing they see when they picture their dream wedding. This usually gives me an idea of their priorities. So close your eyes and imagine your wedding… What stands out to you… what is most important, and what worries you? Write those things down and then communicate them with your vendors. They will not only help you get what’s most important to you, but ease the stress of your biggest worries.
Take a note from Siri and be ORGANIZED. Make lists, check them twice (at least), and make sure you are keeping things in order. Especially if you do not have a Wedding Planner keeping you on track, it is vital that you stay on top of your tasks. Emailing vendors is a great way to track details, and help make sure things are not forgotten. Anytime you discuss something make sure you followup in writing so everyone remembers what you talked about, and there aren’t any disappointments later. Also, make sure you live up to your commitments, if you have a call or a meeting scheduled be there (and be on time), and if you have a task you need to complete, do so. You want your vendors to see that you’re on top of your game, and you can and should expect them to live up to all of their commitments as well.
You know how your mom always said, “You catch more flies with honey…” Well I never understood why I’d want to catch flies, but I do know that being KIND is far more likely to get you what you want or need. So be as sweet as honey with your vendors, and trust me they will be even more likely to help you get what you want. We all like to help people, but especially those that appreciate it, or that we feel we connect to. If you can connect with your vendor on a personal level, let them see that you appreciate their time and expertise you will be on the right track. Building a positive relationship will not only make planning more enjoyable for you, it will help when you find that you need a little extra help and have to call on one of your vendors. And in truth this shouldn’t be difficult because most event professionals are in this business because they LOVE people and weddings, so if you put in a little effort they will happily reciprocate.
Whether you’re having an intimate wedding with 30 guests or a soirée of 300 I guarantee if you are prepared, honest, organized, and kind you will be on the right track with communicating with your vendors.