What is the significance of designations or certifications, and what should I ask for when interviewing a wedding planner, professional event planner, or coordinator?
While many qualified planners and coordinators are not certified by any organization or association, those that have earned the right to use “PBC” (Professional Bridal Consultant tm), “ABC” (Accredited Bridal Consultant tm), “MBC” (Master Bridal Consultant tm), “CWC” (Certified Wedding Consultant) or “CSEP” (Certified Special Events Professional) are often a step ahead. Certifications and designations are achieved only after completing an educational program and demonstrating proficiency by exam and/or submitting a portfolio of work experience. Of course you should always consider the coordinator’s level of experience (years in the industry) and the planner / coordinator’s professionalism (a responsible business owner for 3 or more years) in addition to any professional credentials.
What is the significance of the CSEP designation?
The CSEP designation is the hallmark of professional achievement in the special events industry. It is earned through education, performance, experience, examination, and service to the industry, and reflects a commitment to professional conduct and ethics. The CSEP designation, awarded by the International Special Events Society (ISES), is the only internationally recognized certification program in the field of special event industry management. Candidates who earn the CSEP designation are required to be recertified every five (5) years to maintain the designation.
What can I expect from working with A Flair for Affairs?
Service, value and professionalism.
Customer Service is paramount to us. As a Client, you can expect that:
...your calls and emails will be answered promptly
...you will receive personalized attention, straight talk and expert advice
...we will do our best to make your wedding or event planning experience enjoyable and stress-free
Technology has made our office completely portable, so we are flexible to meet you at your home, office, or on-site at your event or wedding location.
Our services are very competitively priced; while we do charge a fair price for our experience and expertise, we keep our overhead expenses to a minimum to ensure you receive an excellent value for your investment!
How do you recommend vendors?
Professionally, I'm committed to operating in the best interests of my Client. As a Consultant, I will listen to your specific needs and preferences, and offer advice based on my assessment of what you're looking for. To that end, I typically tailor a short list of top professionals for each client (unless they’ve already completed the vendor selections process on their own); my recommendations are based on price, personality, style and positive past experiences.
It’s important to note that I do not recommend the same vendors to each client – the reasons for this should be obvious (and many have already been stated), however, this is not intended to reflect negatively on any vendor not included on a client’s list, nor should an omission be interpreted negatively by any vendor.
Additionally, please know that I do not offer referrals based on kickbacks (compensation for the referral). Not only is the practice of accepting referral fees frowned upon by some of the professional associations I'm affiliated with, but I believe that doing this would ultimately damage my professional credibility.
Can you save us money?
Often times, yes. I have saved many clients money by preventing costly mistakes, such as over ordering or paying more than fair market value
Not to mention that on occasion, I have the opportunity to extend preferred pricing or vendor discounts to the client. Or sometimes a preferred vendor will offer my client(s) a ‘perk’ as a result of my referral.
What is the difference between an Initial Consultation and a Meet & Greet appointment? (Do you offer a Complimentary Consultation?)
A Meet & Greet appointment provides the opportunity for us to get-to-know each other a bit better, and is complimentary (there is no charge for the meet and greet appointment if it does not exceed half an hour). Your inquiry will prompt us to collect some initial information via telephone or email, and then a Meet & Greet appointment may be scheduled in order to gather additional details required to create a proposal, or to provide supplementary information about the services we provide.
An Initial Consultation is an excellent opportunity for us to discuss your wedding in detail. If you have critical questions and need to receive immediate feedback and professional advisement, or, if you’d like to brainstorm design concepts and obtain vendor referrals - this is the best option for you. For this professional service I charge a fee; there is no contractual obligation, just the fee for the consultation time, typically 1.5 – 2 hours. Following our meeting, you may apply this payment as a deposit towards a planning & coordination package to engage our continued assistance.
The term “Complimentary Consultation” should not to be confused with the complimentary appointment we offer (Meet & Greet appointment). Consulting is our business, therefore all consultations are billable.