I am working with a bride (who I took on against my own better judgment), and the other day as we were discussing next steps, etc., she mentioned something about how she was just going to “stop by” the florist to see if she could get a handle on her centerpieces. When I asked who she was going to meet with, she said, “Nobody, I’m just going to stop by.” I stopped in my tracks. I broke out into a cold sweat. My hands started shaking. I felt breakfast making its way back up. Okay, I am exaggerating, but the truth of the matter, bridey, is that you should NEVER just “stop by” or “walk in” on any of your vendors. Nobody appreciates it. Nobody is prepared for it. And frankly, it’s fucking rude.
Not to sound like a third grader, but how would you like it if somebody did that to you? Just walked into your office, plopped themselves across your desk with a stack of papers, and told you that they were ready to chat about XYZ? I’m guessing that the first thing you’d ask is if you missed an outlook appointment on your calendar, right? I would. And what if you were on a deadline; the project you were currently working on had to be in by noon? Most likely you’d politely ask if you could chat about XYZ later… Right?
Now, I need you to do something for me, bridey… Please click on this link, and re-read the post I wrote about appointment etiquette, Five Crucial Wedding Appointment Etiquette Guidelines. Okay, now think about your wedding vendors. The very fist thing I mention in this etiquette post is… “Bridey, don't ever just "walk-in" to a hotel, bakery, dress shop, photography studio, etc. expecting to be seen, and then get pissed off if you have to wait or are turned away because they can't see you.” There’s a reason I list this first! Because it happened too often! Bridey, by simply “walking in” anywhere without an appointment puts your vendors in the position of being unprepared and stressed. Not to mention that they might not even be there or they may be visiting with another client who made an appointment to see them.
For the millionth time, bridey, you would never dream of just walking into doctor’s office without an appointment, would you? No, because that’s just foolish. So, how come it doesn’t strike you as odd to just “stop by” or “walk in” somewhere outside of the medical profession? If you are working with a busy venue or vendor, it’s quite likely that the person you are stopping by to see is currently engaged with somebody else. So, don’t do it. Phone first. Make an appointment. You do it for everything else in your life, don’t you? So why is this different? It’s not!
Getting back to my bride, who was planning on just “stopping by” her florist…? Can you imagine what I said to her? Nothing actually… Instead, I emailed her link to the Five Crucial Wedding Appointment Etiquette Guidelines. The best part? She has not idea I wrote it.
Image via THE KEEP CALM-O-MATIC