Married to the Details

by | Jan 31, 2017 | 0 comments

Last week I got married.

It was the third time.

Stephanie Melish WeddingWell, not really. It was however, the third time I’ve been shimmied into a white dress, and John has been suited up in a tux to play bride and groom. Only one of those actually counted.

You see, one of the perks of owning my own business is having the ability to flex my schedule. This allows me to say YES to the dress when the best wedding photographer in Charlotte asks me to model in a styled wedding shoot. This is the second time she’s asked us, and when you throw in our real wedding, that makes three times “married.” So, not the moral of the story!

Throw the white gowns, tuxes, and fake lashes aside, and there are a lot of business lessons you can learn through breaking down a styled shoot.

4 key business takeaways from a styled shoot:

1. Pre-Planning. There was a boatload of pre-planning that went into preparing for this “white-out” styled wedding shoot. Every single detail was hand selected and thought out as well as a huge coordination with multiple vendors (venue, furniture rentals, gowns, tuxes, flowers, cake, etc.). The success of the shoot begins and ends with all the pre-planning the event coordinator does prior to anyone showing up in the hair and makeup chair. If the pre-planning fails, the shoot fails as well. It’s the same in your business. Fail to plan, and you’ll fail to succeed. How much effort and focus are you putting to pre-plan in your business?

2. Detailed Communication. Along with the pre-planning, there was communication between the coordinators and all the models and other team members. This wasn’t just any communication; it was detailed communication. The best and most useful communication piece shared through this process was an agenda e-mailed, a day in advance, to everyone who was a part of the shoot and/or day. It allowed for everyone to see what was going to happen, not for their own part, but for the shoot in its entirety. I often see businesses devoid in this avenue. They communicate only the portion of the picture that applies directly to a specific person or department instead of communicating the whole picture. When companies share the complete vision with their teams, it allows them to see how their part affects the whole. It empowers them and gives them a wider sense of ownership. An offense won’t run nearly as efficiently if they don’t understand what the defense can do when they are sidelined. In business, everyone is part of the team; leaders should communicate like it.

3. Consistent Vision. The vision for the shoot was “white-out.” Every single detail was white, silver, or sparkle (my favorite!). The planners executed this vision all the way down to white chocolate martinis for the “reception” photos. From flowers to cake to table linens and chairs, the consistent vision was seen in every big and small accessory. It’s this level of consistency in business that takes you to a new level of success. Often times, businesses stray from their brand, messaging, and legacy vision, and the result is a confused audience. The best businesses maintain a consistent vision and execute it with authority and confidence. It’s this consistent vision and effort that makes businesses rise to the top of their industry. How consistent is your vision these days? Feeling like a stray cat? Perhaps it’s time to make your way home or find a new forever home.

4. Right People. None of the above points would happen without the right people. For this shoot, they assembled the crème de la crème of vendors, collaborators, partners, and models. It shines through in the photographs but also in the amount of fun we had on the shoot that day. Without the right people, the pre-planning, detailed communication, and vision would not have come to fruition. It’s the same in business. Without the right people, a team of vendors, collaborators, partners and, perhaps, models, your business will not reach its full potential. Surround yourself to succeed by picking the right people, and when you don’t, part ways swiftly. It’s the best for all parties.

Do the hard work, and you’ll inspire greatness. Because, when you surround yourself with the right people, plan, communicate, and maintain consistency, you’ll be picture perfect, the kind of photo published in magazines that others cut out, pin, and post as their own inspiration. All you need is to get married to the details.