“What is the turnover rate of employees at your establishment?”

Posted by on Jul 22, 2014 in Venues, Weddings | 0 comments

“What is the turnover rate of employees at your establishment?”

 

Dear engaged couple, when you and your significant other go looking for a venue you probably are armed with   a set of questions you intend to ask the wedding coordinators with whom you meet.  You will want to know, for instance, whether you will be required to use the catering service at the venue, or whether you may bring in your own.  You will want to know whether the venue provides tables and chairs, or whether you must rent these from an outside source.  One very important question is often not asked, which I hope you will, after reading this blog, put at the very top of your venue-questionnaire:  That question is:  “What is the turnover rate of employees at your establishment?”  If you get in response, a defensive sounding “What do you mean?” or “Why do you want to know?”  best to move on.

How demanding could wedding coordinating possibly be?

A friend who worked in administration for a big retirement facility once told me,  “If you ever have to go looking for a retirement or elder care home for your loved ones, check the length of employment of the staff.”  Ditto wedding venues.  I tell you now you want to work with people who know what they are doing, and who are not new and unfamiliar with their jobs. You want to work with people who are getting “on the job training.”

The top wedding venues regard weddings as their primary source of income. Accordingly, and maybe because also they really want to offer brides and grooms an over-the-top memorable experience,  they hire talented wedding coordinators, caters, AV people and florists  These talented, well paid people will work with you diligently as you go about the important task of planning for your big day.

Other venues, though, may have a cash flow problem. These vineyards, orchards, bed and breakfasts, and hotel owners and managers say to themselves, “Gee, maybe we can make a little extra income by hosting weddings.”  So they add a wedding site to their webpage, hire someone for minimum wage who is right out of college to act as wedding coordinator and voila! —they have a side business!   The untrained wedding coordinator takes the job because she always thought it would be fun to be involved with weddings.  She says to herself, “How demanding could it possibly be?”  She doesn’t realize when she signs on that her weekends will be shot, and Fridays, too. She had assumed she would get support from the rest of the staff and the owner and manager. Not so.  She is an appendage to management, and not part of the management team.  She lasts maybe three months, six months—maybe an entire year.  Then she is gone.  Not to worry.  The venue owner or manager hires another young thing.  She (and usually it is a woman) lasts three, six months or one year and moves on.

The Mill at Fine Creek is one of many venues that specializes in weddings--they have a top-notch wedding coordinator who has been there for many years

The Mill at Fine Creek is one of many venues that specializes in weddings–they have a top-notch wedding coordinator who has been there for many years

I am currently working with a couple who in the time since they booked the venue, less than a year ago, has worked with three different wedding coordinators.  Each time the couple has had to repeat information, renegotiate which services the establishment will provide, you get the picture.  And the couple has little confidence that the current wedding coordinator with whom they will working, will be the one who actually sees them through to their wedding day.

Again, it pays to ask that important question, “What is the turnover rate of employees at your establishment?”

Happy Wedding Planning

Your Wedding Preacher for Hire

 

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