A smart accountant who knows to work tactfully within budgets, excellent public relations personnel who is sensitized to people's feelings, a good organizer with an eye for detail - important elements that are part of job profile of a wedding coordinator. It is a career that certifies your skills- money management, time management and managing emotions and feelings of people.
Other than a lucrative income, a wedding coordinator has the satisfaction of being an integral part of an important event in the lives of two individuals. Your efforts should successfully culminate in happiness and unforgettable joyful moments not only for couples who join hands to take the oath of lifelong loyalty but also for their family and friends.
Since many people prefer to hand over the detailed planning and execution of wedding plans to a professional, this career has definite potential. What with all the excitement, job flexibility, advantages and happiness that are part of it, a wedding coordinator packs in a busy schedule. A wedding coordinator is also called a bridal consultant or wedding consultant.
A wedding coordinator works to satisfy the wedding couple so as to make their special day truly memorable. With a whopping $ 33 billion being spent on weddings in the U.S. alone, it is little wonder that bridal consultants are very much in demand. What was once considered the privilege of the elite is now an option for couples who want to make their wedding uniquely personal.
Every satisfied customer publicizes your service, advertises for you, either directly or indirectly. Building an impeccable track record helps in creating a unique brand image, a niche market for your services. Before, you embark on a career as wedding coordinator; look at traits that are commonly present in every established wedding coordinator.
- Creative vision
- Conceptualizing skills
- Highly flexible
- Good fashion sense
- Excellent communication skills
- Outstanding people/relationship skills
- Negotiation skills
- Organization skills
- Time management skills
- Maturity to handle emergencies
- Handle tense situations with ease
- Classic tinge of humor
- Well-versed with legal aspects of marriage
It is a career choice undeniably most suitable for those who can shoulder responsibility with ease and confidence. It is an excellent avenue for challenge-lovers who look for all interesting elements of a job on one platter. Wedding planner certification courses such as DIP WP gets you an accredited Diploma in Wedding Planning.
Part-time and full-time courses provide formal training with certain level of exposure through real-world assignments. With the assistance of an expert tutor, you can get a complete insight into the world of wedding planning. Though no client is keen on assessing your educational specifics, certification can be a training ground. In reality, prospective clients check background of interest, knowledge and experience you possess in a wide range of subjects.
These elements justify your ability and competency in conjunction with client's expectations. The first few assignments handled independently aid in gaining wide and varied understanding of wedding issues. The more you know about a variety of wedding subjects, the better edge you have over your competitors. In due course of time, you acquire the wherewithal to become a versatile, confident and knowledgeable wedding coordinator.
- Keep track of latest trends in wedding products and services
- Understand and keep abreast of fashion news for gowns, veils and headpieces. Read wedding magazines and catch up on different wedding apparel.
- Ensure that you maintain a good network of contacts with high-quality and reliable wedding services, from photographers and florists to jewelers and disc jockeys.
- You can also provide additional services such as selling accessories, renting tuxedos and printing invitations.
- You need to be very conversant with wedding etiquette.
Wedding Coordinator responsibilities
The first appointment, approximately two to three months before the wedding day, with the soon-to-be bride and her groom sets the ball rolling. Preferably, it ought to be a two-way communication. It helps to understand the expectations of the client, their personality and tastes and discuss the range of services you can offer. Subsequently, you can analyze and present a proposal for consideration covering all or select areas, as the case may be. As part of the initial discussion, you can segregate work as pre-wedding and wedding day coordination arrangement.
The bride: Selecting, designing and coordinating bridal wear fittings, including accessories. Assist the bride in choosing veils and headpieces. Coordinate for a bridal shower party and also extend etiquette advice.
The Venue: Selecting the theme of wedding and venue, preview wedding and reception site. Assist and suggest in designing a décor plan for the wedding ceremony and reception sites. This includes seating arrangements, selecting appropriate music for different parts of the wedding, design of favors, place cards, linen placement, flower arrangement, centerpiece setting, alter decoration etc.
The ceremony: Finalizing wedding and reception time and the complete schedule for the wedding day. For the wedding ceremony, you need to help out in selecting the venue and the wedding officiant, be it a minister, rabbi or Justice of Peace. A wedding coordinator needs to obtain the marriage certificate. Planning and rehearsal for wedding processional and ceremony needs to be coordinated. When organizing the wedding reception, a wedding consultant will coordinate the receiving line, first dance, cake cutting and bouquet toss.
The Guest list: Forwarding invitation to guests and ensuring their receipt and finalizing the guest list and guests seating arrangement calls for considerable planning and coordination. Arranging hotel accommodation, if required for out-of town guests must be done in advance. Travel arrangements for guests on the wedding day need to be planned so that there are no glitches. Often some guests may have special dietary requirement; a responsible wedding coordinator will not miss to make a note of such special needs.
Ancillary services: Getting clergy, obtaining marriage license, selection of wedding cake, caterers, designing and printing invitations, selecting florists, photographers, limo service and other service providers are intrinsic to the role of a wedding coordinator. Supervising and ensuring quality and appropriate pricing of vendor services can help keep wedding expenses within budget.
Menu and refreshments need to be sorted out with the couple, depending on their preferences. If required, wedding coordinators can also help decide honeymoon locations and make necessary arrangements such as travel, hotel accommodation, sight-seeing etc for the newlywed couple.
Wedding coordinator remuneration
Going by the market trend, professional wedding coordinators charge 10% - 15% of the wedding budget. A lot depends on the location, nature of tasks, services offered and your level of expertise. There are 3 different ways in terms of pricing your services.
- Certain percentage of the wedding budget.
- Rate by hour or ($50- $150 per hour)
- A Flat fee
If you decide to work on a full-time basis, it will be possible to service about 40 weddings a year. Usually, the months of September, October, June, August and December are the most preferred calendar months to hold weddings.
Successful wedding planner
Like in any other profession, there is no short cut to success in wedding coordination. A disciplined approach, hard work, sincere efforts, efficient management, honest dealings can win more referral clients for a budding wedding coordinator. The start up costs being very minimal, it normally takes three years to establish and get prominently noticed. Very soon, you will reach a break-even period and in five years it will turn out to be a profitable and satisfying career. Look at tips to spread the word about your wedding coordination services
- Talk to people, especially at weddings
- Request good friends to refer your service
- Speak to priests at local places of worship and wedding service providers
- Participate in bridal fairs, establish contacts.
- Select reliable wedding vendor service providers
- Print and circulate cards and contact details
- Make a portfolio
- Get included in your area message board
- Adhere to a professional working pattern
- Have a service agreement in place
- Safeguard interests of your client and yourself
- Include required terms and conditions