Editorial Category: 
Thursday, May 16, 2019

Why You Shouldn't Hire Your Friends To Work Your Wedding

Welcome to The Bride Link Podcast, your home for expert wedding planning advice.

Today we're talking all about why you should not hire your friends to work at your wedding. So I want to give you just a couple of tips of advice and then also a few stories about what I've seen is a wedding planner and see friends working events.

First and foremost, the number one reason you shouldn't hire your friends to work your wedding is they may not be as experienced as a professional wedding vendor. Even though they might be giving you a good deal or even gifting you their services for free, you might not be getting the level of service that you would expect. You may lose out on some things, especially if it's like a photographer, DJ or somebody that really has a big impact on the day of your event. 

Also, they may push your wedding to the back burner since you're such good friends and you might not get the same treatment that a paying customer might get. They may prioritize they're paying customers over your wedding. It would be easy to assume that either you would understand, or you're not really paying them anyway, so why should they give you the same level of service?

The third reasons why you wouldn't want to hire your friends is because you want your friends to enjoy your wedding and not have to work it. I've seen where photographers know people at the wedding because they're friends with them too, and they lose focus on the photography and they start visiting with the friends that they know. I've even seen a photographer walk around with a beer in her hand catching up with old friends for almost an hour while the reception went on! I couldn't stop thinking about how many pictures the bride and groom missed out on because they had a friend as a photographer instead of hiring a pro. I’ve also seen another photographer bring his family to an engagement session and stopped to take pictures of his children. He was friends with the couple and said it was such a beautiful backdrop at the venue that he couldn’t resist.

Now, this alone is potential for some awkward conversations, but another awkward conversation can be about money. Money can always be a weird subject with people and especially when you're talking with friends and family, it can make it extra, extra awkward. So when somebody offering their services to you, are they offering it as a gift? Is there a friend’s and family discount? What if you think their services are more expensive than what you actually wanted to pay? Do you feel like you should expect the same level of service if they've gifted it to you for free or offered you a big discount?

It can be a really weird conversation to have with somebody, especially when you're talking about the way that they earn a living. The service that they provide is something they're really passionate about and it can be awkward and you don't want to offend anybody. What can be more awkward is if you do hire them and then you're not happy with their services. What if you have to come back later and say, you're not happy with your wedding pictures? What if they were a really unfocused DJ that was catching up with friends and they missed a lot of the timing for your event and the flow of your event was off. Or worse, they came completely unprepared with not the right equipment and you were missing some things like a mic at your ceremony because they just didn't know better. Having a conversation later about the services that were provided not being up to par could ruin your friendship with them. In addition, if you're not happy with their services while you're planning, it's kind of hard to fire them before your wedding day cause it's definitely going to make it weird. Then, do they even know if they're invited to the wedding?

All of these reasons combined can make it really difficult working with friends. But what I would say more than anything is you're missing the opportunity for an experience that is stress-free. An experience where you don't have to worry if somebody is completely prepared for the day of. A day where you don't have to worry about the standard of the product that you're going to be receiving after it's all said and done. You wouldn’t have to worry about awkward conversations about money or refunds when you hire a professional. A pro knows how to do it because they're experienced and they've done it over and over and over.

They can also add additional value to what they offer because they can ensure that you're going to have a product that you're happy with at the end. A lot of times there's all sorts of things that you didn't even think about and a friend would not know. For instance, insurance and permits and all types of business administration things that a pro would have completely covered and a friend might not. What if it's their first wedding?

So all in all, what we say to do is if you can afford it, if it's in your budget, higher a professional for everything! You’ll feel so much better when you're getting into your wedding dress, knowing that professionals are taking care of you on the day of your event.

If it's just not in the budget, you can look into hiring friends, but first, look at your budget and ask if there's anything you can cut. Do you really need favors over a real DJ? Should you be purchasing three gorgeous wedding cakes when you can deal with one and hire a real photographer? Make sure that you're not spending money in areas that you don't need, because hiring a pro is something you'd definitely, definitely should do

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