Planning a wedding can be a stressful and nerve-wracking experience. For many people, it’s the biggest celebration they’ll ever be responsible for planning, and it’s also one of the most important days in their lives. It’s only natural to worry about making sure that everything goes well. Fortunately for all would-be wedding planners out there, a lot of event management theory can be applied to wedding planning. Here’s a few tips from the perspective of someone who does a lot of event management in the UK.
Lists Are Your Friend
Successful event planning requires an organized mind and good time and people management skills. It also involves a cool head. Writing things down helps with all of the above things. The act of writing something down doesn’t just ensure that you won’t forget it later, it also provides you with a concrete item on a list – something that you can use to instruct others. In addition, recent research has found that writing things down helps to stop you from worrying about them. Buy yourself a good, sturdy notebook, and take it with you so that you can take notes no matter where you are.
If you start planning a wedding well in advance, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that you have plenty of time to get everything done. Set deadlines for specific tasks, and make sure they’re done on time. Prioritize issues such as picking the venue, arranging catering, and getting fittings for any clothing required. All of those things can take far longer than you might expect. The venue, in particular, should be booked several months in advance. Some popular venues can be booked out for a full year.
Put together a plan that covers broad periods of time to begin with (one year out, nine months, six months, etc), and as the date draws closer, narrow down your schedule, so that you have plans for two months out, six weeks out, and so-on.
Include everything you can think of on your plan. If you want to lose weight ready for the wedding, or plan on having long hair, make sure you include “Start my diet”, and “No more cutting my hair into a short bob” in the plan.
Take the Insurance
If you’re spending a lot of time and money on your wedding, it’s a good idea to take out insurance. If I’ve picked up one lesson from doing event management for UK based companies, it’s that even big, reputable venues and caterers can let you down. Insurance can turn a catastrophe into an inconvenience. You probably won’t need it, but if things do go wrong, it’s invaluable.
Try to have reasonable expectations, and be flexible when it comes to your plans. You may envisage a beautiful, outdoor celebration, but you can’t control the weather. If you end up holding your wedding on the only wet day of the summer, then you’ll be glad of your backup plan to take the party indoors. Wedding planning involves a lot of management – but not all of that management involves venues, suppliers, and bridesmaids. A part of wedding planning is managing your own expectations.
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