Business Growth: Focus on Quality
Business growth…the title alone probably conjures up positive thoughts for many of you. As entrepreneurs, we’re encouraged to seek more, to build, to conquer, and to grow to our full potential. After all, isn’t the goal typically to manage large, big-budget weddings, perhaps several per day? To step into the role of lead planner, overseeing a staff of support personnel who help make it all happen? This what we see when we visit sites like www.sashasouzaevents.com and www.mindyweiss.com. We work hard to gain the kind of reputation where demand for our services forces us to increase our internal staff numbers. I adhered to this thinking when I first started out, thinking bigger was definitely better. But after a couple of years, I realized I needed to go in another direction, one that was a better fit for me, my goals, my values, and my personality.
Several times a week, I am approached by talented women looking for employment, whether on an internship or part-time basis, or as a full-time career move. I always feel bad that I am unable to offer them a position, but I have chosen a different route than seems to be the norm. I do seek growth but of a different kind. Growth for me is achieving a reputation and a brand that enables me to do the type of events that are truest to my nature.
I’m interested in planning better events, not more events. I want to take part in events where I play a pivotal part of the planning process. I want to enjoy a close relationship with my clients and their family, and help them to achieve their goals with ease. I want to create events that mirror both my clients’ and my own values. It’s taken five years of often excruciatingly long hours and a commitment to excellence in all that I do to get where I am today. Now, my brand consistently attracts the exact clientele I want!
There are several reasons why I opted for a different type of growth – growth in quality versus quantity. All of those reasons are unique to me alone and my position in life, and yours will be too. Here is a list of just a few of my reasons, to give you an idea why I made the business decisions I did:
- Being closer to retirement than many planners, growth wasn’t necessarily a good fit for me because of the time commitment involved in overseeing multiple events and staff.
- I find my connection with my clients the most rewarding part of my career, and to give that experience up to my staff wouldn’t be as satisfying to me.
- I am a bit of a type A personality (okay, not just a bit…), and have a hard time giving up control.
- I tend to feel most stressed when I feel out of control. Therefore, keeping control of a smaller number of events would improve my quality of life.
- Put simply, at the age of 50 my values do not include making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Someone at the beginning stage of their career would probably have different financial goals than I do.
- I value being wholly available to my clients, so providing a high level of service to a small number of couples is a better fit for me.
Although the decision not to grow in the usual sense was sometimes a difficult one, I have no doubt that it was the right move. Entering my sixth year, I am enjoying every event with which I am involved and really feel like the business is a true reflection of who I am and what I can offer the industry. You too will develop a business plan that will evolve over time until it becomes exactly what it should be for your own values and personality. I assure you, it will be a wild, rewarding ride getting there.
Best of luck and happy planning!
Lynn Lee has over 10 years experience in the event and wedding planning industry. These days, she’s focusing her attention on her growing wedding planning business, Weddings Unveiled. Her weekly blog posts include business tips, wedding trends, and expert advice.