No Respect! Why so many wedding businesses don’t get any

no respectFor decades, I’ve considered the quandary of many wedding industry business owners who feel (in the vernacular) ‘disrespected.’

As a mobile disc jockey, many years ago, I often found myself answering the always-annoying question, “So, what’s your day job?”

Some time back, I posted a couple of animations about the feelings of Wedding Planners toward Bands, and Bands toward Wedding Planners. Each, taking the quintessential negative view of the other (as a class). The scenarios were stereotypical, and very funny. However, if you are a true professional, you might find them incredibly offensive, personally.

There is THAT word, professional. By dictionary definition, a professional is one who earns their living in a given line of work (paraphrasing, from several variations).

On the flip side, there are wedding industry people who work part-time, but  do a ‘professional quality job.’

There are those who aspire to become a wedding professional, are learning their craft, and practicing it at some level.

And then there are ‘nonprofessionals.’  And that may simply mean they are untrained or inexperienced. Or, in the long run, may lack the necessary skill set or ambition to fully succeed in the wedding industry.

Jumping to the answer that this post asks:

OPINION: It appears in many wedding industry categories, that far too high a percentage of the wedding industry businesses (i.e. people doing the work) ply their craft on a part-time basis, without the current skills, or full-time aspirations.

Let’s be clear… if someone has a full-time career, and is doing ‘professional quality wedding industry work‘ as a part-time passion, good for them. My concern is with the vast number of people who dabble in mediocrity, or worse.

I have this discussion with various people, in assorted industry classifications, and, while the numbers may vary, the same points seem to come up.

  • Barriers to starting a business and calling oneself ‘a professional’ are quite low.
  • Brides are usually first-time, one-time, customer (for the most part) and are often overwhelmed by the planning process, and easily fooled into hiring substandard businesses… often when seeking the ‘best deal’ aka ‘the lowest price’.
  • Collective industry ethics and understanding ‘what the other business does’ is an area of weakness. We often overlook issues such as : licensing, proper insurance, back up equipment, and the like.

The question you can answer is this: There seem to be a vast number of businesses, in the part-time group, that lack the aspiration to ‘take the plunge’ into full-time self-employment. I’m curious to understand why.

There are always issues about insurance or ‘security’. For me, those sound more like excuses, and not solid issues. Ask anyone who has been laid off from a large company about ‘security.’ They’ll tell you they had the illusion of security.

Is it the absence of the ‘entrepreneurial gene’? Or something else?

The temporary excuse is the economy. Weak!

I’ve answered my premise: Wedding industry businesses do not get proper respect, in the main, because to few of them are professionals or part-timers doing professional work.

  • Do you see this situation, similarly, or perhaps another way?
  • What will it take to motivate quality people to leap into the full-time arena?

Your answers, ideas, opinions, and musings would be appreciated.

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Expert
The Wedding Marketing Blog

2 thoughts on “No Respect! Why so many wedding businesses don’t get any”

  1. I was on of those persons who had a daytime job, and worked my wedding business in the evenings and weekends. I was one of those persons who found it hard to let go of my health insurance and steady income from my day job.

    However, I also found it difficult when I was at my day job to answer any calls coming from potential new wedding clients. I would be at work, my cell phone would vibrate in my pocket and I would not be in a safe area (away from upper management) to answer it. I had the attitude that if I did not answer my phone and talk to the new client, they would then call my competition and thus I would lose out on booking them.

    The final straw came for me when I was in a meeting with upper management and I received 4 calls during that meeting. Due to me being in the meeting there was no way I could answer my cell phone. For every incoming call that I was not able to answer, I said to myself, “There goes $1000 dollars.” My phone would ring again and I say to myself, “There goes another $1000”…and so on.

    After that meeting I knew my only option was to quite my day job. However the thought of no insurance and the steady income of my day job not being there scared me. It took another 4 months before I did leave my day job. For me it was the best thing. I wish I had done it earlier. I’m now able to devote 100% of my time to my business and since have improved the final product and have managed to raise my prices since then.

    There is no doubt leaving your day job can be scary. But I would say to the person who has a wedding business that if u are making more from your wedding business than your day job, and you feel your product/service is in high demand. You will be pleasantly surprised at how better your business will do. You as the owner will be able to focus 100% of your energy on your business, which in turn will improve the product/service resulting in more money.

    John

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