When we start out as wedding planners we often focus on one sole thing - booking as many clients as possible! We think that having a fully booked calendar is our primary goal and once that's happened, we are successful!
Well, after having a record-breaking year back in 2014 (that very nearly broke me!) I realized that keeping a fully booked calendar isn't actually my true definition of success as a wedding planner and that something needed to change moving forward.
Instead of sharing all the things you could do to keep your calendar fully booked all the time, I'm going to share with you my tips for making sure you're being intentional about aligning your business calendar with how you actually want to live and experience life.
1. Start with the end in mind
In order to create both a business and life that you love, you have to know what you want it all to ideally look like. If you have a solid understanding of what is really important to you in your personal life, you'll more easily be able to see what business choices you should and shouldn't make.
Ask yourself (and be honest!) how much time you'd like to spend with family, how you want to feel on a daily basis, how you want to spread yourself out, etc. Also, figure out how much you need to make financially, and then determine how many clients it would take to hit that number.
I'm not saying you can have everything you want - but you can get darn close, and our God is a good, generous one - He wants to bless you richly and abundantly! But He's given us access to wisdom to figure out how to step into the fullness of that blessing - so we'd better make sure to use it!
2. Know what you have to work with
At the end of the day, you have the same number of hours as anyone else on the planet. What you choose to do with them is entirely up to you. It's important for you to understand what you have to work with in terms of time, energy, resources, etc. Your unique answers to these questions will help you determine your ideal capacity, which is likely to look very different from the others you're looking at in your industry.
Don't fall into the trap of thinking you have to stay as busy as the next planner otherwise you won't be "successful." Check your definition of success and make decisions that will both grow your business and enable you to live the kind of life you want within the context of your capacity.
3. Get creative
If the financial goals you've set for yourself are feeling overwhelming, consider getting creative about thinking up ways to add extra revenue to a fewer number of clients. For me, this is floral designs and partnering with my mom and her catering services. Work to get the most bang out of your buck in terms of all resources expended and you'll be much better off than spreading yourself too thin by working with more clients than you should.
4. Focus on quality over quantity
It is a myth that you need to have a constantly booked calendar to be successful in this industry. All it takes to make a great income and be successful is to connect with the right brides and devote yourself to serving them well.....your girl crush brides will come, I promise you! Nothing is more powerful than word of mouth advertising and if you're connecting and working with your ideal client, then making sure to over deliver when working with them, they are sure to send loads of business your way (people who will likely be similar to them - double score!)
5. Know your ideal client - and how to say no
There is truly no good sense in saying yes to everyone who wants to work with you. Ain't nobody got time for that! Know who your best girls are - and hold out for them! It will make a world of difference to both you and your clients if you realize early on that you aren't a good fit. Finding out it's not a good fit when she's already walking down the aisle isn't the best timing.
Just remember - a burnt out you doesn't do anyone any good and the hallmark of a successful wedding planner isn't how many wedding she does in a year, but how well she serves her clients and how well she honors herself in order to serve them well.
Do you struggle with saying yes more often than you should? How do you deal with overwhelm, guilt and the pressure of perfection? I'd love to hear in the comments below!