Interviews with Planners - Betty Owens

Betty feels a calling to the field of Wedding and Event Planning. She has experience being behind the scenes due to her serving 10 years in the US Army in the field of International Logistics. She has lived in various countries and saw one thing each culture had in common: they LOVED to celebrate special occasions. She has planned numerous banquets, conferences, anniversaries, dinner parties, and weddings for the past 5 years, and has now branched into opening her own business. She is Internationally Certified in Event and Wedding Planning, and has her Bachelor's Degree in Business Management. Betty is also currently the Special Events Coordinator at The Centennial Station Arts Center in High Point, NC where she handles contracts for weddings, and schedules staff as well. She loves being able to work at a unique venue while also running her own business as well. She is known for being professional, yet personable, and she protects the best interests of her clients. She currently lives in High Point, NC and is a part of the Triad Bridal Association, and numerous event professional networking groups. Betty believes strongly in building an amazing team to pull off a once-in-a-lifetime event.

What is the best advice you have ever received as a planner?
The best advice I have ever received was to stay current. Follow the trends, and see what is coming down the pipeline. Most brides will look to me to create the design for their wedding, and they want to be in the 'now'.

What is the most unique location you have ever planned an event at? What was great, what was challenging? 
The most unique location would have to be the Centennial Station Arts Center. It is a fantastic location because of its historic value, the challenge was convincing the bride not to do a 'flip' because the lobby was not large enough to hold all of her guests. She hesitantly agreed, and once she saw the smooth transition, she absolutely loved it.

What advice would you give to someone entering the business today?
My advice would be to get a mentor FIRST. My major problem was I did not have a mentor until I was already in business, and I made a lot of mistakes because of it. A successful mentor can help you see things you may not have even considered starting out.

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What do you see as the most challenging aspect of being a planner, and how do you overcome that challenge?
The most challenging aspect is relaying to clients that there is a difference in a wedding planner and a decorator, I overcome the challenge by explaining to my client that I work with a decor team that will come and set up any decor they choose for their particular budget.

How do you think our industry will evolve in the next five years? 
I believe this industry will be so expansive we won't be able to keep up! Social media has sped up a lot of the dating processes, so there will be plenty of weddings and baby showers in the near future. And the next generation is so tech savvy, there will be countless business openings that event planners will be hired for as well.

What makes you successful as a planner? 
My ability to approach a hiccup with urgency and humor is what makes me successful. I am able to think very quickly on my feet, and I stay on task. I go above and beyond to ensure my clients enjoy their day and the hard-earned money they poured into their event.

In your opinion, what is the best and worst industry trend of the year?
My absolute favorite trend this year is all of the different types of invitations. Laser cut invites and the envelopes are so popular.

And for the worst, I would have to say still using the outdated chevron pattern in weddings. The pattern is still pretty, but if you are trying to stay current, this is not the pattern to incorporate in your special day.

What is the best industry book that has helped you as a planner?
The book that is helping me most right now is "Offbeat Bride: Creative Alternatives for Independent Brides" by Ariel Meadow Stallings. My ideal client is the bride who is not a 'girly-girl' and would rather not have any pink at her wedding. So this book has definitely helped me in this area.

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Betty Owens
CEO, Certified Wedding Planner
Your Turn Wedding and Events
Phone: 910-364-9114
Affiliations and Memberships:
Triad Bridal Association
QC Event School Graduate
Triad Event Professionals
Event Professionals Alliance
National Association of Professional Women

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