This weekend I had a cool opportunity. A close friend of mine, knowing my interest in event planning and the experience I have gained atHumboldt Storage & Moving, asked me to participate in the coordination of her wedding weekend celebration. I say “wedding weekend” because they rented out a whole resort in the Berkshires and called it their “semi-destination wedding.” We arrived on Thursday night and did not check out until Monday morning. But I think everyone will agree that weddings are breeding grounds forstress! Months and months go into the planning of one single day (or hour!), and everyone is on edge with the fear that something will go wrong! So my job was to absorb all the stress so that the bride, the groom, and both of their parents did not feel any of it! After everything was said and done, they all came up to me individually to thank me and tell me how perfectly everything went. Not one hitch! If only they knew the truth (shhhh, its our secret)! The day of the wedding we ran out of flowers and had to go out for more, the make-up girl didn’t bother showing up, so I ended up doing a bunch of it myself, the room that we had for the hair dressers only had one outlet (it was a very old building), so we had to rig up piles of extension cords so that the 3 hairdressers could plug in 6 curling irons, hair dryers and straighteners (there were 10 bridesmaids!), 2 of the groomsmen’s boutonnieres broke and we had to rig up a solutions 2 minutes before the ceremony started and the front desk informed me we had about an hour until a huge thunderstorm was going to roll in (luckily it stayed bright and sunny for the ceremony and the pictures…but barely). I am pretty sure the bride was, and still is, unaware of every single thing I just mentioned. The mother of the bride knew only about the flowers because she was involved in assembling the bouquets and the rest of them were lounging by the pool with a cocktail through it all! But, even with the mayhem happening all around us, my “customers” (even though my time was volunteered and they were good friends of mine) were unstressed and as calm as they possibly could be. I was able to deflect and convert every situation from potentially stressful to smooth. The wonderful receptionist at the resort said to me: “I don’t want to be part of the problem; I want to be part of the solution!” And that’s what we did. We stayed calm and called on our personal skills to fill in any missing links. We kept a smile on our face and offered reassurance to those who needed it, we handled drama with rational thinking and we made the day a success. There is no question that my experiences at Humboldt, a Boston moving company and agent for United Van Lines, helped me greatly in this situation. Over my 3+ years at Humboldt I have organized and coordinated many social events including a community benefit that raised over $4000 and a large agent meeting that brought our United Van Lines partners from all over the country to Boston for 4 days of networking events, games and a conference. I am no newbie when it comes to the problems that can pop up, or the potential issues we may run into. But on top of my event planning experience here, I also know how stressful local, interstate and international relocation can be. As the professionals, it is our responsibility to do everything in our power to absorb the stress of the move and keep our customer as calm as they can possibly be. There will inevitably be something that does not go exactly as planned, but more often than not, we can “be part of the solution, not the problem.” Our experience gives us the tools to handle every potential stressor with grace and rationality. Even the worst problem can be turned around with honesty, integrity and ingenuity! This weekend all my skills as an assistant, an event planner and a problem solver were put to the test. It was a personal challenge and a great opportunity for me, not only to help a close friend, but to test out my skills on a larger scale. And at the end of it all, despite my overwhelming exhaustion, the wedding went very smoothly for the wedding party and the guests and in my book, that’s a job well done!
Be Part of the Solution, Not the Problem