Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cool Chick With A Cool Job - Wedding Planner

Today's Cool Chick with a Cool Job is Brandi, a local wedding planner and all around cool chick who I met through our local blogging community. She basically has my dream job. Which, if she wasn't so darn sweet and awesome, I would totally hate her for and kick her in the shins. But she is actually pretty darn sweet and so excited about her career so I won't kick her shins, I'll just introduce her to you guys!

V:  What is your education/employment background?

B:  I completed my Wedding and Event Planning certification 2 years ago.  I also have 15 years experience in the Food & Beverage industry. That has definitely helped with the catering side while planning events!

V:  Is being a wedding planner something you've always wanted to do?

B:  I actually wanted to be a psychologist.  What changed my mind was searching for available jobs in that field.  I couldn't really find anything.  That's when I knew it wasn't meant to be!

V:  How did you get into this field?

B:  It was one of those "Ah-ha" moments!  The golf resort I worked for in Las Vegas hosted weddings and other events all the time.  I would always see them setting up all the pretty decorations and wanted so badly to be a part of it.  I had planned smaller parties and showers in the past so I decided to take the next step and started working on my wedding and event certification.  I then approached management at the golf course and asked to intern, run food...pretty much anything they would allow me to so I could get the hands on experience behind the scenes.  They were gracious enough to create a whole new position for me!  A few months later I was a full time Event Coordinator.  I learned so much and that is where I realized it truly was my passion to plan weddings.

V:  What made you decide to finally go for it and start your own business?

B:  My husband is in the USAF and it was a given that we would be moving to a new area eventually.  Once we made that move I didn't jump back into weddings.  I held an administrative job for a few months.  Being stuck behind that desk I felt like I was wasting my life and needed to get back to what I loved doing.  After many discussions with my husband I decided to put fear aside and take a leap.  Having the support of my friends and family definitely made that decision easier.  It hasn't been an easy task and I have learned a lot on my journey.

V:  What is your favorite part of your job?

B:  When I talk to a couple about their wedding and they are explaining how stressed they are about the planning.  My goal is to make sure they are relaxed and smiling by the end of our meetings.  It's the best feeling for me when I can take that weight off of their shoulders and they begin to enjoy the planning process instead of stressing over it!
V:  What’s the hardest part of your job?

B:  For me the hardest part is sometimes not being able to spend time with family.  For the most part, weddings and events happen on the weekends and sometimes you have to sacrifice a family event in order to work.  It doesn't happen often but in the end I'm still doing what I love to do!
V:  What does a typical day for you look like?

B:  I start my day by getting all of the administrative duties out of the way.  This does take a lot of time but it's something that must be done and can be an issue if you let it fall behind.  I always try to schedule my meetings with couples or vendors for the afternoon so that in the evening I can spend time with my family.  One of my biggest challenges day to day is the balance of business and family time.  It is also one of the biggest deciding factors on being my own boss so that I have the control over that balance.
V:  What advice do you have for someone who wants to get into your field?

B:  Try to get experience anywhere you can!  Working with other planners or caterers can really shed some light on the behind the scenes action of weddings and events.  You can take all the classes in the world but hands on experience is really what prepares you for the real thing!

Thanks so much Brandi! Check out her website and facebook and instagram