In a normal year by May, we event planners are fully geared up, eager to embrace the wedding, graduation and summer celebration seasons. In this “new normal” year, we have spent the past two months witnessing and reacting to the many shifts that have caused clients and vendors to rethink their calendar years (both 2020 & into 2021). Where are we now? Living in the moment and taking care of our clients with daily focus and intense communication to try to hold onto plans that remain realistic and completely reworking those that do not.
As we work feverishly to redirect already postponed events or those in jeopardy and steady those that remain on track, we have also kept our eyes up to witness positive change. Over the last two months, as the world was asked to isolate in order to control this pandemic, we have witnessed how community support surged and lifted the human spirit. We have also witnessed a shift from self-absorption to selflessness. It is remarkable to observe the inherent and deep longing for connectivity and unity even when forced to remain distanced. Even more so, creativity and determination have been the anchor points in working together remotely, dealing with daily obstacles and supporting those in need. For us, this mindset puts new light on what a team and squad truly represents.
I am so honored and blessed to have a squad that even in normal circumstances gives so wholeheartedly to the process and service of our clients. Under normal circumstances, I can count on them to operate from a place of dedication, an exceptional work ethic, professionalism and passion and always giving "even more" for the benefit of a "happier" client and a "more" successful event. As their team leader, I know with all certainty that they will embrace this year with their compassionate hearts and provide service with extra care and sensitivity. It’s just who they are. It’s just what we do as a unit.
Have a peek at Your Event's planning squad at work (pre-pandemic distancing, of course!)...
As we look ahead in hope that our work as event planners will give us even more reason to celebrate with intention and purpose this year, I posed these questions:
1 | What are your thoughts about our team’s mission and mindset this year?
2 | How we will support our clients in the months ahead?
3 | How does this differ from what we normally bring to an event as a united force?
Reflections from Your Event’s core team…
— Laurie Wilson
“As the motivational poster produced by the British government in 1839 states: “Keep calm and carry on”. We are here for you and continue to meet and surpass all your celebratory expectations. Today, tomorrow or next year we can and will adjust through these uncertain times to make your dream come true.”
— Mickaela Grimaldi
“Everything is just on pause right now, that doesn’t mean it changes our mission, but it does shift the mindset. Right now, we have to juggle the unknown and hope that the dates planned can come to fruition within the year. But, we might have to realize the world is changing, which will force us to pivot and pivot again until we can find the solution. That’s why we are here—to help and support our clients with necessary changes and to get the job done in a new way.
Luckily, through this major global change, we have realized how connected everyone can be, even though we have to stay distanced. As event planners, we are thinking about our guests experience both live and virtually, finding new ways to incorporate guests who cannot make the event yet able to feel as though they are celebrating in the same space. We have begun conversations with videographers as well as our clients regarding ways to live stream so absentee guests can have a peek into their day (or night) and not feel like they have missed this long awaited milestone. Being virtually present at an event is not ideal, but it seems this may be one quick fix to welcome as many people as possible during these times when celebrating in a traditional way could be a health risk. Finding creative solutions to create wonderful and memorable events is what we do, but now more than ever we need to utilize technology and think beyond the obvious."
— Amelia Smith
“As the team’s social media correspondent, I have become increasingly aware of the importance of how we connect virtually throughout this pandemic. Whether you are taking a break from social media platforms or engaging with them more than ever, it’s important to recognize how we choose to and want to view content during these strange times. When it comes to couples, Your Event strives to make every moment and interaction as personal and unique as possible. Paula has done an incredible job keeping contact with couples over Zoom meetings and even in person, at a 6-foot distance, on venue properties. As a result, we are capturing more and more moments in which we are simply human and trying to manage how much life has changed within these past few months, particularly regarding our couples’ plans for arguably the biggest day of their lives. We want to share the bright parts of our days and those of our couples, including puppy kisses, sunny days, and freshly-cut flowers, and more importantly, the ways in which we are shifting in order to make it possible to still make their wedding days as wonderful as possible. Although the social media content has shifted into a homier setting, it seems to be just what we need in these times: to feel comforted and to find gratitude in any victory we can achieve, no matter how small. Under Paula’s leadership, the strength of the Your Event team has not wavered, and we will continue to unite amidst the chaos, whether over Zoom or social media, until we can be together once again.”
— Maggie Frankenbach
"As event planners, we are very organized and plan oriented. This pandemic has shifted that mindset drastically because plans can no longer be promised. We are all taking precautions one day at a time, while remaining focused on each client to ensure their comfort with the stage of their planning. No one can predict when things will return to "normal", but that should not discourage your plans because we will all be celebrating again in the future. We are all living in a world of uncertainty right now, and our goal as event planners is to keep communication with clients so we can remain on the same page about future events, while keeping our clients positive and excited."
— Paula Smith
“Working from a place of intention and heart has always been my mission and mindset. My team knows this about me. It's how we interact together and how they witness my interactions with others on any given day. The work is the work, and it certainly is more taxing these days, but the real work is in the caring of those looking to us for guidance or working along side us to figure out the next steps.
In these times, I am focusing on simplicity as well. The challenges have mounted quickly and steeply. I believe looking toward more simplistic solutions and focusing on the deeper priorities of each celebration will allow us to recreate events that hold even more meaning and purpose for clients and their guests.
We have all been through a lot these last months as our home, families and professional lives have been turned on edge. I think now more than ever is the time to listen intently and to be more patient as we interact with each other , be it clients, our core team or fellow vendors. We cannot assume that we truly understand anyone’s challenges, sacrifices or reality but we can adjust our mindset to one of acceptance and offer an even more gentle and caring approach as we work each day and try to move forward in a positive and productive direction."
Optimism, Hope, Leaning in + an Incredible Squad…
Well, that to me is the fuel that allows us to march forward even without truly knowing what’s around the next corner.
LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR SQUAD...
Photography & Videography Credits: Elmtree Weddings
Event Planner & Designer