Below is the most incredible week all wrapped up into one blog post! Here are the highlights of the trip, the top 10 things I learned from this incredible conference, and what I plan to do with it!
Here it is: ENGAGE 14, Cayman Islands
We walked down the long hallway to check in all the while anticipating was to come, nervous and so excited all at the same time. With butterflies in my stomach I picked out my tote, hat, and got my itinerary! Everything was branded perfectly from start to finish thanks to Gifts for the Good Life !
Then it was time to learn from the GREATS!
We made sure to get a front row seat for this!
1. Know Your Worth- In the wedding industry if you have experience, are good at what you do, and create beautiful things- YOU ARE WORTH SOMETHING!
YOU ARE SOMETHING SPECIAL, You have to put up with a lot and you have to make it worth it. It’s time to figure out how much time you spend on each wedding, break it down and see how much you are making per hour. If you are making less than a Starbucks Barista, maybe it’s time to change your pricing. VALUE YOUR TIME! Because you are worth it!
2. INVEST IN THE BEST TEAM
Work with the best and only the best and you will be THE BEST! Work with people who are better than you at least one aspect of your business. If there is something you have a hard time doing- HIRE SOMEONE ELSE TO DO IT WELL! Hero’s are not hero’s on their own, there is a team behind them. Take any great leader- there is a team behind them- a group of people that advised, helped, and made them great. No one can do it alone!
Our speakers included:
Keija Minor, Brides Magazine
Darcy Miller, Martha Stewart Brides
Ron Ben Israel, Ron Ben-Israel Cakes
Bryan Rafanelli, Rafanelli Events
Carley Roney, The Knot Magazine
Todd Fiscus, Todd Events
Cindy Novotny, Master Connection Associates
Abbie Larson, Style Me Pretty
David Adler, Biz Bash
David Beahm, David Beahm Design
3. REMEMBER WHO YOU WERE BEFORE PEOPLE BROKE YOU DOWN!
Remember back to the person you were when you first started in this industry! You were creative, gifted, and a go-getter. You didn’t let anyone stop you, you didn’t care what they said and now… you have made it and you let others words and judgement get to you. You somewhere a long the way listened to what they said, you need to go back- go back to the person you were, the person who got you to where you are today. You are more than what you have become! Remember who you are!
4. LET IT GO.
If it doesn’t work anymore, even if you have done it that way for years- it’s time to let it go. Let the things that are no longer working go so you can commit to the future and everything that it holds. You have to let go of the past, let it go to LET IT COME. It’s time to look at the future and all of the possibilities that it holds. But you can’t grasp the future until you let go of the past.
5. You don’t want ALL of the business, YOU JUST WANT THE GOOD BUSINESS.
There is enough to go around, you don’t want every wedding! You only want the weddings that are a good fit for you! You want to be excited about your work and creating for the couple. Stop communicating and start CONNECTING. Listen, don’t just hear. The currency of the future is RELATIONSHIPS. Create time to create a relationship with your clients.
6. BE AUTHENTIC.
Brides no longer want to be marketed to they want to see the REAL WEDDINGS, not an ad, and they want to see your work. Luxury brides no longer want a wedding, they want an experience. An authentic, experience where you let yourself be known by them and you get to know them personally as well. Be present, be on call, be quick, be better than the rest.
7. Strive for Perfection EVERY TIME!
Push for perfection and be really happy with the attempt. NO event will run perfectly but this does not mean we do not try. Do all you can to create the perfect event and know that things will happen and when they do make sure you do your best to have solutions ready but know that things are bound to happen and it is ok as long as you did all you could to create and execute the PERFECT EVENT!
8. The Competition Isn’t Always Fair!
There will always be someone who does it for less, there will always be someone that can do it for more, there will always be who has an upper hand, and there will always be an underdog. It’s ok. All you can do is your best! Do what you love, do it well, and be proud of it!
9. It’s EXPENSIVE because it’s EXPENSIVE!
Many clients ask why is it so EXPENSIVE! The answer is because it’s QUALITY, it’s TIME, it’s COSTLY! Creating an event is like making soup- I can make you soup, I can make it with bones & water or I can make it with truffles & steak, which would you prefer?
10. THE BEST OR NOTHING. DREAM BIG!
Give it your heart and soul! Be a leader, be a visionary, go after your dreams. Create beautiful things. Don’t look down, don’t look back, ONLY LOOK UP! Look up and look forward- be the best in your industry. Don’t worry about what others are doing, do all that you can to be an ORIGINATOR!!! Create something that hasn’t been created before and be PROUD of it! Do the work you believe in every single day and it will all be worth it.
Enjoy this incredible video of Engage 14 (watch closely and you may see us)!
There are big things ahead for Couture Events! Beautiful things as I have started to put all I learned at ENGAGE into practice for Couture Events. 2015 is going to be our best year yet and there is so much yet to come! Thank you to all of you who have supported us in this amazing journey of Couture Events, it all started with a friends wedding and now over 100 weddings later we are still learning and creating thanks to you!