Wedding Planner Job Description
Wedding Planners bring the vision of brides and grooms to life by planning, organizing and overseeing all aspects of the wedding ceremony, reception and, often, the honeymoon. They ensure that the preparation, as well as the execution, of the couple’s big day goes smoothly and that the newlyweds are satisfied with the results.
Wedding Planners are very much like general contractors. They work with clients to create a plan of action and then are responsible for acquiring the necessary vendors such as, caterers and florists. The event planning industry, which includes Wedding Planners, is forecast to grow 33% through 2022, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, adding 4,420 positions during that period.
Wedding Planner Duties and Responsibilities
The specific tasks performed by a Wedding Planner can vary significantly depending on the client, but there are several core responsibilities you can expect to undertake as a Wedding Planner. A review of current job listings identified the following primary tasks and responsibilities.
Create a Master Plan
A couple planning to get married is sure to have a vision for what they want their wedding day to be. It is the job of the wedding planner to create the master plan – from the wedding date and venue to the seating arrangements at the reception – to make that vision a reality That includes creating budgets, checklists and schedules.
Wedding Planners spend a great deal of their time consulting with clients and meeting with vendors. Appointments must be made with clients to discuss their event, to tour and inspect facilities and to select vendors. As the event draws closer, Wedding Planners may be in daily contact with the clients and vendors to ensure everything is moving forward according to the plan.
Sell Services of Vendors
Selling is an important part of the Wedding Planner’s job. In addition to selling their own services, Wedding Planners are tasked with selling the services of preferred vendors, such as musical acts, bar services and photographers. Wedding Planners employed by wedding planning businesses often are encouraged to meet or exceed quarterly sales goals.
Ensure Contracts Are in Order
From securing the venue to hiring a DJ, planning a wedding requires many contracts, deposits and payments. It is the job of the Wedding Planner to ensure that all contracts are in order and that all parties involved are meeting their contractual obligations.
Wedding Planner Skills
Wedding Planners must be extremely detail-oriented and organized individuals with a real passion for assisting others. Excellent communication skills and the ability to remain calm amid chaos are paramount to success in the profession. In addition to these general skills and traits, employers are looking for Wedding Planner candidates with the following skills.
Core skills: Based on job listings we looked at, employers want Wedding Planners with these core skills. If you want to work as a Wedding Planner, focus on the following.
- Creating and working within budgets
- Negotiating with vendors
- Understanding contracts
- Being able to sell products and services
- Having up-to-date knowledge of wedding trends
Advanced skills: While most employers did not require the following skills, multiple job listings included them as preferred. Add these to your Wedding Planner toolbox and broaden your career options.
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office programs
- Experience with Sale and Catering software such as, Delphi and Caterease
Wedding Planner Q & A
Thinking about becoming a Wedding Planner? If you’re a motivated person with a positive attitude and an aptitude for planning, organizing and problem solving, it may be a good fit, says Event Certificate’s Jody-Ann Rowe. We talked to several wedding planners to learn all about the job. Here’s what they had to say.
What is the most rewarding part of being a Wedding Planner?
It’s at the end, when the couple you have been working with for the past 12 months cannot thank you enough for creating the most amazing day of their lives. It doesn’t matter the level of service they hire you for, the end result is what matters most. – Francine Ribeau, Francine Ribeau Events
What challenges does a Wedding Planner face?
There are a lot of emotions involved in planning weddings. In addition, there are multiple people who want a say-so in the decision making – getting all of those individuals on the same page can be challenging, especially when you need to move forward with some decisions. – Greg Jenkins, Bravo Productions
Who is successful in this job?
Detail oriented individuals who are capable of handling stress and solving problems on the spot. – Erica Trombetti – Infinite Events
How should someone prepare for a career as a Wedding Planner?
Intern with a company. I don’t care what certifications you have. Big deal. There are plenty of certified planners that can’t tell a chiavari chair from a cross back. Get out and get experience any way you can. – Danielle Rothweiler, Rothweiler Event Design
What misconceptions do people have about being a Wedding Planner?
That it’s a fake job, or that it’s easy – It’s not at all, and it’s not about having to deal with brides. It’s about dealing with vendors, justifying your pricing and convincing your couples when you’re right and they are making a mistake. You don’t just get to be a wedding planner because you say you are. You have to work for it. It’s a saturated market and it’s hard. – Danielle Rothweiler
Wedding Planner Resources
We scoured the Internet to find these resources that will inspire, inform and entertain you as you continue to explore a career as a Wedding Planner.
On the Web
Inspire Smart Success – ISS is a wedding industry magazine that offers good business practices and highlights trends in the trade. This blog offers articles on every aspect of the wedding industry.
The Dotter – This blog is written by Annie Lee, the founder of Daughter of Design, an industry leader in boutique hotel wedding planning. This blog offers many insights and tips for fellow planners.
@lafleurweddings – Jill La Fleur offers her expertise as a destination Wedding Planner. Glean tips and advice for planning and executing weddings in other countries.
@KristinBanta – Awarded Best Event Planner of the Year in both 2014 and 2015, Kristin Banta is a fount of information on event planning and latest trends in the industry.
@colincowie – This celebrity event planner is known for his exquisite style and design work. Get inspiration from his beautiful photos of lavish wedding celebrations.
@weddingPR – Leila Lewis shares information on promoting event and wedding planning firms.
American Association of Certified Wedding Planners – AACWP offers mentoring, networking and access to their resources to its members of Wedding Planners.
Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants – The ACPWC has been offering training, education and certification opportunities to its members for over 25 years.
Association of Bridal Consultants – ABC is the largest and oldest training and certification organization for wedding coordinators. Established in 1955, they offer courses and seminars on becoming a successful Wedding Planner.
Wedding Planner Books
Wedding Planner’s Handbook by Kristie Santana – A bestselling industry standard guide covering all aspects of being a Wedding Planner.
I Do: A Wedding Planner Tells Tales by Lynda Barness – This memoir by seasoned Wedding Planner, Lynda Barness reveals the humorous aspects of the job and some of her fondest memories.
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