What are you business values?
This is a question which has come up a few times on workshops I've been on this year and I really wanted to put aside some time to think about the questions, and define what I'm about as a person and as a business.
Happiness / Honesty / Authenticity / Inclusivity / FUN
This one comes first because if you asked me (and probably a lot of other people) what’s the most important thing in your life, or what's the measure of success, my answer would be: to be happy.
Running my business in a way that makes my couples and myself happy is the absolute number one thing out there for me. This means delivering on time, having great communication and connecting with people I work with, putting them first and holding their wedding in as high esteem and excitement as they do. But it also means keeping myself happy, mostly meaning taking breaks when I need it, so not beating myself up if one day I need to go to the park or to yoga instead of editing because I need some head space. I'm continually trying to appreciate what I have and where I am now, and not always focus on where I want to be or where other people are. This year I’ve been loving the Happiness Planner which has really helped me keep focus on my gaols and appreciate the good things in my life too! Next year I'm going to try and take more breaks from social media as well.
Again this is something that feeds into my personal life a lot. Building a relationship of trust and honesty is really important to me with what I do. I want my couples to be able to know they’re in good hands, and that I have their best interests combined with my knowledge of photography to deliver them the best set of photos and experience I can. I am a human and not a robot and giving 100% honest experience might mean that occasionally I deliver a little later than I planned, or I don't respond to emails straight away. Sometimes life happens and it’s unavoidable but I will always, always be honest with people.
This is similiar to above, but it’s about being authentic to who I am as a person. As a business I automatically have a ‘brand’ but for me that’s about being as clear and open as I am as a person, in the hope I attract like-minded people to work with. My Instagram is a good example of this, I mix personal and business so couples can see my wedding shots, and then also see the epic breakfast I made myself, or the day out I took with my sisters. I want to be someone who has a personality behind the business, that connects with people in a no-crap kinda way.
The one that kicked off this mission statement writing, after a fantastic workshop with Nova Reid of Nu Bride. I definitely feel that it’s really important to me that all my couples feel equally valued by myself, and also that they have their place in the wedding industry. It is SO geared towards a certain type of ‘bride’ or ‘couple’ and I really want to make a difference in bringing it back to a more even keel. That people don’t always assume you’re a ‘bride and groom’ or that if you’re a size 16 you can’t try on dresses as ‘sorry we just don’t have that size’. You are important and valued whatever you look like or your ability.
Okay this one is important, not sure if it’s a business ethos but it kinda is for me because I don’t know if I could do this job if I didn’t love it and find it fun. I look forward to meeting couples after they book, getting to know them over SNAP & CHATs and exchanging emails on band recommendations, dresses or anything else they want to pick my brains about. And on the wedding day I like to have fun! And obviously you’re having fun (duh it's your wedding day!) I don’t photography to be a chore, or a bore, or a tick off the list – it’s about documenting your memories and your laughs to do that I like to have a smile on my face myself.