If you are about to plan your dream wedding, rest assured it can be a process that will leave you both excited and exhilarated. Unfortunately, those not prepared or well informed can be in for a rude shock. The process can be stressful, cost you a bucket load more than you budgeted and you’ll wish you just eloped to Vegas.
If you know how to properly manage your wedding from the start, you can relax on the day knowing everything has been taken care of, and that it will play out how you’d hoped. A wedding should be one of the most memorable events in your life as a couple, so make sure you do it right the first time.
Here are a few tips to think so that you can be equipped to begin this challenge.
Don’t gamble with your time and $$
You’ll be super keen to jump into planning the glitz and glam of the day, however it is important to consider some fundamentals before you start. It doesn’t matter how many weddings you have attended in the past, if you don’t understand the basics of wedding planning you could risk mismanaging your day. You’ll be disappointed and lose valuable time and money. Unfortunately, this a common reality for many brides.
Over the years I’ve heard and read countless stories of brides who regretted not spending spent more time to understand ‘how to play the game’ and wished they could have another go at it. Couples put their heart and soul into the day but were sad with the outcome. It was stressful and didn’t look like they thought it would even though it cost them a fortune. They were embarrassed for them and their guests.
Here lies a common problem. They weren’t prepare and misunderstood the complexity of planning a wedding. They thought they could take on the challenge without being trained or educated, and many relied solely on wedding coordinators to create their day.
Project manage the cards
Your wedding is a project and with all successful projects you have a Project Manager. A Project Manager is different from a Coordinator. A Project Manager controls the whole picture (from budgets and themes to guest lists and etiquette), whereas a Coordinator may only look after the implementation (such as coordinating suppliers and assisting on the day).
A Project Manager works on timelines, runsheets, negotiations, overall design and deals directly with coordinators, venues and suppliers. They also design a concept and bring it to life through mediums such as storyboards, diagrams and mind maps which help communicate ideas. (I’ll be talking about some of these in my coming posts). A project manager creates a foolproof plan to manage their project and all its moving parts.
To explain this concept a little better, try to picture your wedding project as a set of playing cards.
You, as the Project Manager, must oversee the creation of a new set of playing cards (aka you’re wedding). Each card represents what you want at your wedding. The box represents your budget. Each card must fit nicely into the box.
Before you can create your playing cards, you need to learn about the game. Who are the players? What are the rules? Where will the game be played? How could you make your set unique? Research, read, inspire and educate yourself as you are not yet an expert. Map out your findings.
Next, define the layout of the box. What is this box going to look like? How big or small it is, how many cards will need to fit inside and do you have room for extras. Will the box tie all the cards together?
Then design and arrange the cards. The cards must serve the correct purpose or the game can’t be played. Each card represent an aspect of your wedding, such as table layouts, guest lists to invitations. You’ll have a stack of different options (see what I did there!) so as Project Manager you must oversee and negotiate the design, production and arrangement of each individual card so the game can be played correctly.
Finally, oversee the playing cards production by making sure each card is produced on time to your specifications. The finished product should then be exactly what you wanted.
If you invest a little time in the start to learn these new concepts, you’ll design a wedding that both represents you couple and your suppliers will respect your professionalism and appreciate your organisation. They will want to work extra hard for you and be part of your special day. You will save time and get more bang for your buck.
No need to elope. Play wisely and you’ll win.