Micro-Manager vs. Laidback Leader: Which are You?

WeddingIQ Blog - Micro-manager Vs. Laidback Leader: Which Are You?

(Editor's Note: Friend of WeddingIQ and frequent guest contributor Jennifer Taylor of Taylor'd Events is back today, sharing some insights on different types of leadership within a wedding business. Read more about Jennifer at the end of the post!)

If you work in the event industry, you probably don’t need anyone to tell you how many moving pieces it takes to put on a successful wedding. With that said, the way you handle those pieces speaks a lot to your work style and can have a major effect on the final result.

With so many details to keep track of, it can be fairly easy to micro-manage. Who knows your job better than you? While it’s certainly important to make sure everything falls into just the right place, there is a time and place to take a step back and let the day flow naturally.

Sometimes trying to control every single aspect of the day can overwhelm the couple – they want to spend the day enjoying the company of their loved ones, not hashing out the little things! At the same time, it can also overwhelm you and cause you to miss some of the spontaneous moments of their big day. Don’t lose sight of what makes their wedding special – avoid falling into the motions of an event by embracing the couple and their uniqueness.

At the end of the day, the goal is to get the happy couple down the aisle at the right time. As event professionals, we all have to face that there are things that are out of our control. If the guests aren’t finished eating by the time marked on the timeline, that doesn’t mean you go and pick up their half-finished plates. Instead, you must adapt and rework the timeline to fit the situation – some things you just can’t plan to a tee ahead of time.

That being said, the key to a successful wedding is communication – but without being too on top of things. Once everything is set, take a step back and let everyone enjoy the celebration, staying close just in case anything comes up. If you have trouble with this, try delegating tasks to other members of the wedding day team. For example, let the DJ or band handle the announcements for toasts and dances – it’s their expertise, so allow them to shine! You can still be involved by making sure people are in the right places (not in the bathroom!), but it’s a good time to stay back and let things flow.

In some cases, you may not be the micro-manager but instead have to work with a detail-oriented bride or groom. While it’s nice for couples to be involved in the planning process, we all know that sometimes they can cross the line. They hired you for your specialty, of course, so you should be able to do your job!

The very best way to handle a micro-managing bride or groom is to simply show them that you know what you’re doing. Always try to be one step ahead of them and share ideas with them before they come to you – this shows them that you’re on top of things and they can relax a little more. If there’s something specific that makes them anxious, get to the bottom of it and see how you can help. If they are insistent on hijacking the day’s timeline, let them – it is their day, but let them know the potential risks of their changes so they are aware. Some people want it their way and you just have to let them – their day will still be special and you don’t want them to think you’re trying to get in the way of it.

When it comes down to it, it’s just as important to take a step back from the details as it is to plan them out. A happy balance between micro-managing and letting go will ensure that a couple’s special day goes well while maintaining the natural and spontaneous flow that every wedding should have.

Jennifer Taylor is the owner of Taylor’d Events Group, a planning firm that specializes in celebrations of all kinds in the Pacific Northwest and Maui.