Whether it’s a bride, a groom, a maid of honor, or mother in law, no one likes a zilla.
No one desires to feel like a minion and what’s more is that it’s actually pretty amazing just how much more help, support, and understanding can be gained by keeping a level head and a sweet smile. Oh, why this needs to be said at all is beyond me but it really doesn’t hurt to remember your manners, a please and thank you (in a nice tone of voice!) can go a long way.
Hmmm, now how does that bees to honey saying go again?…
In an effort to preserve your own sanity and that of your clients as well, check out the below tips on how to ‘Zilla-proof your business.
1.) Refer to all planning as that of the couple’s, NOT just the bride! That “it’s the bride’s day” baloney is like a magnet for attracting ‘zillas. Don’t do it. Get clear with the couple about who is contributing to the wedding planning process and therefore who’s opinions carry weight with the couple (again, not just the bride) and their wedding celebration.
2.) Get clear on the budget. They don’t have a budget, tell them why they need a budget. Besides the obvious reasons of it making your job more clear, share with them that it will also improve their organization efforts and overall sanity. Sanity in check=lower stress levels=no stress induced acne on the wedding day. It’s a win-win-win!
3.) Have a stellar follow up and communication system in place. Following up in a timely and professional manner is a sure-fire method for keeping any ‘Zilla-ness at bay. Also, by staying in contact with the couple and updating them of any progress will allow you to course correct should their need to be changes made well before the big day.
Which brings us to our next point…
4.) Have clear contract terms and make sure you review these with the couple (and anyone responsible for billing) prior to signing on the dotted line. This is also where you should be clarifying any expectations that you have for your couple and they for you. Don’t want phone calls and text messages after midnight? Outline your communication expectations and availability. Extra charges factored in for last minute changes? Put it in the contract or come bill paying time you may be left empty handed.
5.) Do your best to align your biz to attract the couples you really want to work with from the get-go. So you love quirky couples that have a bit more of a non-traditional vibe? Make sure your marketing reflects that. Also, when you do meet with your prospective clients listen more than you speak, at least initially. This will give you an opportunity to hear them out on what their vision look likes, what is important to them, and who they are as a couple. From there you should be able to steer the conversation into how you can help them achieve their goals, or if they are not a good fit for you and your business, who you might recommend would be great for them based on what they’ve shared with you.
By implementing the above strategies, you are set up for some smooth sailing my friend. Now, I won’t lie, a ‘Zilla of some sort could still swoop in under your radar, but now armed with the above tactics you have some options to help them course correct back onto the road to serenity and happiness. Sappy? Yeah, maybe. But, worth it.
Now for a laugh and as a tribute to any ‘Zillas you’ve worked with in the past, you have to check this out.
Now it’s your turn, have any really great tips for working with ‘Zillas? Have you ever worked with someone you just couldn’t see eye to eye on?