No You Can’t Pick My Brain/ Article Found In Forbes Magazine

Sometimes a good article comes along that you just have to share  with clients or event professionals.  This one actually comes in handy for both as read in Forbes Magazine. 27 Miracles writes many blogs and shares a lot of good information with the general public to help out with google searchers.  We offer a  free initial consultaion for inquiring clients-to-be.  If you are getting married or planning an event, feel free to give us a call at 407-905-5454 for your free initial consultation. Visit us on our webpage www.27miraclesbyrosie.com or email us at info@27miraclesbyrosie.com

Happy Reading!!!

Work in Progress 

 

No, You Can’t Pick My Brain. It Costs Too Much

Adrienne Graham Adrienne Graham, Contributor
 
 
 
I love giving advice. I write blogs, articles and a newsletter. I host a radio show. I tweet, Facebook and share nuggets of advice almost daily. So what is it in all of that, that would make anyone think they can still have the right to “pick my brain”?

I can’t tell you how flattering it is to be approached by representatives from major companies seeking my wisdom and advice. It show they are listening and like what I have to say.

But often I find the road ends when they are just on a fact finding mission. That mission is to pick my brain to gather as much free intel and knowledge they need to make their jobs easier.

Not gonna happen, sorry. My brain costs money to maintain. There’s training, classes to attend, reading (I have to buy books), gaining certifications, costs of memberships so I can network, attending conferences and mastering my skills that all cost me money.

I have to protect my investment. How fair is it to me to give away all the knowledge I have acquired that I use to make my living, pay my bills and eat?

Now, don’t get offended. If you do, maybe you deserve to be offended because you’re one of those aforementioned brain pickers.

There have been many articles written and discussions formed around this very subject. With the Internet being so widely available loaded with free information, people automatically assume that you too have to provide information for free.

My response to that is go ahead and read the free stuff. But when you still find yourself lacking answers, then apparently the FREE stuff doesn’t work. You can’t come to a professional and ask them to work for free. In essence, that is what you’re doing when you ask to pick someone’s brain.

How would you feel if your boss came to you and said, Hey since we can get this done from information from the Internet, I won’t be paying you today. Go ahead, let it sink in. Got that visual yet? Good. That’s exactly how I feel whenever someone wants to take me to lunch or call me to pick my brain.

If you’re like (how I used to be) you’ve given away tons of valuable information. I never once minded helping people out. It’s the ones who keep coming back for more freebies and those who take my ideas, implement them, find success, then never offer to repay me for my time.

And no, a turkey sandwich is not payment for something that helped you overcome an obstacle and either created value or additional revenue for your company. I charge my paying clients very good money for my expertise and results. How would they feel to know that I’m giving out free advice? Not too swell I would imagine. In fact I hope they don’t call me demanding refunds!

The most prevalent question I get is how do you draw the line? Deciding the point where you begin to charge is tough, especially if you’re just starting out.

But your knowledge has value. You’ve invested time and money into learning your craft and it’s not fair for people to expect you to give it away for free. Even friends need to understand there are boundaries.

For example I will no longer advise my friends or family for free. (Wow, I just made some people mad….they’ll get over it!). I have businesses to run, employees to pay, mortgage to pay, office rent to pay, college tuition, etc, etc, etc.

I’ve told this to friends who have promptly replied, “Me too, you know I don’t have much money”. SO WHAT. That means you either have to delay your plans or come up with the money to fund your dreams. Period. Giving away information is the quickest way to end up evicted or foreclosed on. Put that in proper perspective for a moment.

If you’re having problem drawing the line in the sand, here are some rules of thumb you should follow:

  • Believe that what you know is valuable. If it wasn’t then why are they coming to you? You’re their chance to solve a problem or find a solution. That has value. Charge for it.
  • Create a fee schedule. Whenever someone wants to pick your brain, make sure you have your fee schedule in front of you. Give them a quote for how much it will cost them. They’ll either pay it or move on. If they move on, good riddance. They weren’t interested in paying you anyway. Let them figure it out on their own.
  • Decline lunch/coffee invitations unless they are strictly non-business. If the conversation swings around to business, quickly and politely tell them you’re off the clock. If they are interested in a consult they can book an appointment and let them know what the charge is for that.
  • Keep it light. Some of you will probably cave and throw a few nuggets out there. If you do (I hope you don’t), keep it general. Give the why and what but never the how. Anything beyond the why and what comes with a charge. And don’t even point them in the direction to obtain the how. That’s short changing yourself.
  • Prominently post that there are no freebies. OK not in those words. But if you have a blog or website, and even on your social media profiles, make sure you mention that consultations are available at a fee.
  • Exchange for equal value. This puts you in an advantageous bargaining position. If someone requests free information or help, you must feel comfortable in asking for an in kind value service. Assess what they have that can be of equal benefit for you. If they are genuine, they should have no problem in an even exchange of knowledge. Only you will know if what they have is equal to what you’re giving.
  • Refer them to your “free” resources. If you write a blog, have published articles, have archived videos or podcasts or have a show in which you dispense advice, refer them to that information. Explain that those are the only free information sources you offer. Anything specific or beyond what’s readily available has a cost.
  • Don’t be afraid to send them to Google. You can recommend they go to Google, or any other search engine or to sites that have articles or information about what they need advice on. You can also recommend a book or magazine that might be helpful. Let them expend that energy they would have used in meeting you at Starbucks and hit the search engines to find their answers. Problem is, they’ll be overwhelmed with varying degrees of information. Not fun for them, but when they’re ready to put it in proper perspective and implement, they can come to you…for a consult…a paid consult.
  • Ask them for a paying referral. If they truly want your expertise, they have to be willing to help you out too. It’s kind of like the Equal Exchange point I made above crossed with paying it forward. Before you dispense any advice, ask them to provide you with referrals to others who most certainly need (and can afford) your service.
  • Don’t back down. I know it’s hard to say “no” sometimes. But you can’t back down. People will know how far they can bend or push you. Stand firm, set your boundaries and guard your treasures (your brain and the know how in it). The minute you compromise you devalue yourself and your expertise.

Most people are afraid to draw the hard lines in the sand for fear of angering a friend or losing a potential client or opportunity. Trust me, if they will walk away because they cannot get a freebie, they weren’t meant to be a client and there was no real opportunity in it for you.

Many in the marketing circles will tell you the freebie give away is vital. But it doesn’t always lead to a sale. Likewise giving away what you would do in a given situation during an interview will not necessarily lead to you being hired. It’s up to you to determine what you’re willing to give away and how much of it. Know your worth, understand your value. Stop being taken advantage of. No more freebies.

Til next time.

Adrienne Graham
No, you can’t pick my brain!

Every Bride Should Read About Wedding Planners

27 Miracles is always trying to update the clients and vendors about what is out there and when we see a good article, we will share it with everyone.  In this article, it speaks about wedding planners and what they put into their work as well as what you receive with a newcomer.  At 27 Miracles we say this, if you do not hire our service we will not be offended, however when you do hire a service, investigate the company, read their reviews and don’t always go with a company because they offer you a service that looks or sounds similar for pennies to the dollar.  You always receive what you pay for, not that the most expensive is any better either.  What matters most is customer service and quality of work.  If you have spent your hard-earned dollars on any vendor and you received quality work and great customer service, then that is money well spent!

Please click the link below for the full length article…..

http://specialevents.com/weddings/newbie-wedding-planners-plague-the-professionals/index.html?imw=Y

After all would you want to purchase an Eva Longoria Original Diamond Ring or the Cubic Zirconia version? You have to do your research in person because online any ring can look promising, but it’s in person that counts with an appraisal and a good look under the microscope.

Eva Longoria Replica Emerald Cut CZ Engagement RingD_IMAGE.10efcb6ba0a.93.88.fa.d0.587c0cd1[1].jpg

Angela Nuran Shoe Sale

Have you gotten your wedding shoes yet?  If not contact 27 Miracles today we have several sample shoes for sale in the discontinued Angela Nuran Eternity Shoes.  Limited quantity available in the sample shoes.

The Eternity 2010 and 2011 shoes being discontinued contact 27 Miracles today for your shoe purchase information.  Shoes are 1/2 price.

Here is the link to the Angela Nuran Eternity shoes.

http://www.angelanuran.com/

See one of our brides wearing her shoes from the moment she  gets her day started..

https://27miracles.wordpress.com/2011/06/28/the-comfort-of-angela-nuran-shoes/

27 Miracles donates part of the proceeds to the Brides Against Breast Cancer.  October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Let’s see if we can break all the records of shoes sold and buy as many of these shoes to support this organization.

http://www.27miraclesbyrosie.com/tools/brides-against-cancer.php

Contact 27 Miracles at 407-905-5454

Visit us on our website

www.27miraclesbyrosie.com

Thank you !

Customer Service/Who are Your Customers?

As a wedding and Event Planner many times I get told by my brides and clients about bad experiences that they have had with XYZ vendor.  It is Terrible as we get the low down on the industry and we as a professional have to be able to speak positively and professionally about those we call our peers.  The old phrase that your mom taught you, always comes to mind, “if you don’t have something nice to say about someone, don’t say it at all.”  Sometimes as planners we are forced to say just that “nothing.”

I am not here to point a finger and tell vendors how to do their jobs, but purely educational to help us all in the wedding and event industry.  If you are the client and you go to the store and purchase a tv and it works only 75% of the time, you will not be happy with it.  You will want to bring it back and get your money back.  Well on service that is a little bit of a gray area, we all have non refundable deposits or booking fees as we take the date off the calendar so that the client has you for their event.  That is great!  But please do remember that after you receive that client, they may not come back for repeat business, unless you are a photographer and they would like to do another event or family pictures, but their friends and family may.  This is an example of your external customer.

Here is another scenario for you;  you refer a client to a vendor and the vendor never sends you a thank you or never sends you the things that you need as a planner to do your job efficiently or market their work and yours efficiently.  This is an example of your internal customer.

We educate a lot of the students that come out of the event management schools and novices that come to us through the Association of Bridal Consultants and one of the things that 27 Miracles is very very big on it is Customer Service.  We let these students know about their internal and external customer.  Your internal customer is your receptionist that answers the phone for you, your business manager, your other planners that you work with, your vendors that refer to you and your vendors that you refer to as well.  Having said that, we explain and teach them that they have to treat them better than they treat themselves( yes that is correct) you would never ignore yourself or be so difficult with yourself to not get along, right?  This is the same for internal customers.  We are so focused on the bride the client until they sign on and then we forget about them and pick them back up the day of the event or when a payment is due, but what about the waiting in between.  I know we are all busy but let’s take a moment to say to our internal customers that we work with frequently and bring you business( and even those that don’t but make your life easier when you work together) what can I do to make this event run smoother for you?  Or what can I do for you today to help grow your business? 

As for our external customers the clients, the brides and their families, I realize that we don’t see them often once they sign on, but a friendly email to say hi how are the plans for the wedding going, do you need anything, or sharing your newsletters with them is a nice way to say we appreciate your business and we are here if you need to ask us any questions.

So having said all of that, what can 27 Miracles do to help you today?

Pictures Courtesy of http://phillips.blogs.com/goc/2007/08/self-employment.html

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Give and You Shall Receive

Most recently a friend of mine introduced me to a book called the Go Giver.  She told me about this book that had these five laws in it for business people and also just for people in general in their every day lives. I thought to myself hmmm another one of those motivational story books that the book shelves are filled with.  But I wanted to be positive.  I listened to her talk about this book and share the five laws with me.  After reading these laws and the book, I realized that there is something to these laws.

Buy the books

I will share the five laws as stated in the book with you:

The Five Laws of Stratospheric Success

The Law of Value

Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment.

The Law of Compensation

Your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you serve them.

The Law of Influence

Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people’s interests first.

The Law of Authenticity

The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself.

The Law of Receptivity

The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.

Pretty simple huh?  Well for some it is not the easiest thing.  27 Miracles has been practicing this for awhile now and yet we did not even know it.  What it means for everyone out there, as a bride or client expects to receive more than they are willing to pay at times, it is obvious that a business can’t be run on smiles and thank you’s alone.  However it can be run on me spending an extra 30 minutes to spend with someone at no extra charge.  Or doing someone a favor that I know takes me 2 minutes to do instead of stating it will take me an hour to do that is so complex and I charge to do it( when reality is it does not take that long)

I guess this goes with the old saying ” Give and you shall receive.”

Visit the website:

http://www.thegogiver.com/

DEBUNKING THE MYTH OF THE “DAY OF” PLANNER, by WIPA

The Wedding Industry Professionals Association most recently wrote an article titled,   DEBUNKING THE MYTH OF THE “DAY OF” PLANNER.    Here is the article with the link, this will explain the services of a day of planner vs. a Wedding Director for the day of.   Here is the Link: http://www.wipausa.org/pdf/debunking_myth_of_same_day_planner.pdf

Every couple deserves a wedding planner and many recognize the exceptional value of having one. However, because of current terminology some couples anticipate they can hire a planner just for the day of the wedding. The facts are: the “Day of Planner” does not exist. The term was picked up by the public and has made its way into the everyday vernacular.  wedding is to fully understand their vision and what they have contracted with their team of vendors.

The pre-wedding meetings, vendor confirmations, review of vendor contracts, timelines, planning, referrals, production schedules, venue logistics and walk through typically require a minimum of 25 + hours for any experienced planner. The day of the wedding will be an additional 10-15 hours. The planner will be on site early, directing set up and implementing the client’s vision. This allows the couple to be relaxed and to enjoy their day.
Every couple wants the day to run flawlessly. A professional Wedding Director is a planner with the experience and knowledge to make the day run smoothly and effortlessly by coordinating the vendors and the venue; orchestrating an effective timeline and overseeing the often complicated logistics.

By hiring a Wedding Director the client will receive the service and expertise they deserve to make the wedding day run perfectly.

In light of this, the Wedding Industry Professionals Association (WIPA) recommends the terminology “Wedding Director” to replace “day-of planner”.

No couple wants someone to walk in and pretend to run the show with no prior knowledge of their wedding or preparation! The only way a planner can successfully execute a client’s

wedding is to fully understand their vision and what they have contracted with their team of

vendors.

The pre-wedding meetings, vendor confirmations, review of vendor contracts, timelines,

planning, referrals, production schedules, venue logistics and walk through typically require a

minimum of 25 + hours for any experienced planner. The day of the wedding will be an

additional 10-15 hours. The planner will be on site early, directing set up and implementing the

client’s vision. This allows the couple to be relaxed and to enjoy their day.

Every couple wants the day to run flawlessly. A professional Wedding Director is a planner with

the experience and knowledge to make the day run smoothly and effortlessly by coordinating the

vendors and the venue; orchestrating an effective timeline and overseeing the often complicated

logistics.

By hiring a Wedding Director the client will receive the service and expertise they deserve to

make the wedding day run perfectly.

 

  

 

Wedding event raises funds for breast cancer/Orlando Sentinel Nov 20 2010

The 27 Miracles Wedding Consulting Company  will host a holiday event Dec. 2, with puppet shows and photos with Santa Claus. Proceeds will go to Brides Against Breast Cancer, which helps grant wishes for those battling the disease. The event, 6 to 9 p.m. at 100 W. Plant St., honors those who have lost battles to breast cancer, including Adriana Yanez of Deltona, who died in February, said wedding planner and friend Rosie Moore. Admission is an unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots. —Eloísa Ruano González

Want to be comfortable all day in your wedding shoes?

Brides want to look beautiful from head to toe in their shoes.  The problem is that by the middle of the night those three-inch heels are no longer comfortable and they end up taking off those uncomfortable shoes that look great in the store, but were never made to last 8 hours of standing, walking and dancing.  Most recently at a Bride’s Against Breast Cancer Gown Sale at the University Club in Orlando, Rosie Moore, Wedding and Event Planner for 27 Miracles had the opportunity to meet Angela Nuran.  Angela Nuran is the designer for Angela Nuran Shoes.  These shoes are designed with the bride in mind.  “They are elegant, classy, sexy and super comfortable.”     When Rosie Moore tried on a pair, she thought to herself that she would try these on for coordinating weddings as she is on her feet over 8 hours and she herself at the end of the night would end up cleaning up after the reception in her bare feet out of tiredness from high heels that were made for looks alone.    The alternative was to wear comfortable shoes that were not elegant or elegant uncomfortable shoes.  Rosie opted with comfort so that she could be comfortable serving her clients.    Once Rosie tried these Angela Nuran shoes on, she was convinced that she was wearing slippers.  The comfort even in the 3 1/2 inch heels was incredible.  So comfortable that now many of the planners in town that have met Angela Nuran, have ordered these shoes. 

See Angela Nuran’s website for a store near you that sells her beautiful shoes which come in white or Ivory for the bride and black as well as any color can be dyed.  See Rosie Moore wearing Angela Nuran shoes in 27 Miracles favorite color, of course, PINK!!!  http://www.angelanuran.com/

Charity Gown Sale Today March12-14th

Brides Against Breast Cancer 2010 Charity Wedding Gown Sale ..The University Club 150 E Central Blvd Orlando VIP Preview March 12th 6-9pm, March 13th 10am-6pm and March 14th 10am-2pm…Please let all your brides know so they can come and purchase a gown that will go towards a good cause. http://www.bridesagainstbreastcancer.com

Becoming a Wedding Planner

Here at 27 Miracles Wedding Consulting we recommend contacting the Association of Bridal Consultants http://www.bridalassn.com/default.aspx or contacting Penn Foster http://www.pennfoster.edu/bridalconsultant/index.html for information on their course to become a wedding planner.  Once you complete your program and obtain your certification, contact the Association of Bridal Consultants and let them know that you would like an internship with an established wedding planner in your area.  If we are in your area contact us to see if we have any available openings for an internship.  An internship gives you the ability to shadow a professional bridal consultant and his or her business to learn the basics of wedding planning and if this is for you.  An Internship is an unpaid educational opportunity that will give you valuable  lessons.  What you take away from the experience is dependent on how much time and effort you place in the learning experience.