“R-E-S-P-E-C-T FIND OUT WHAT IT MEANS TO ME”
I have been pondering for weeks about a topic for my next blog, a topic that would be relevant and helpful to all that are planning an event. Today however, it came to me. This blog may not be directly related to planning an event but more about how one reacts and how our reactions affect others. I woke up this morning to find a leak in my son’s bedroom. His carpet was soaking wet and I, like any other mother, began to panic. The worst thoughts began to cloud my mind, what if there is mould now in his room. We will now have to pull up the carpet, knock down the walls, and the whole house will have to be renovated. After watching too many of those love it or list it shows, I pictured myself in a house that would have to be totally reconstructed. Then I came back to the reality, it was time to figure out what to do, who do I call? how can I make this situation better?
This is where the true magic of my day happened. I got on the phone and called a gentleman that I have used for years from a steam cleaning company called Steamol. After I explained the situation, he came to my house within the hour. As soon as he arrived he began looking outside the house to see if he could see where the water was coming from, he then checked all of my eaves troughs (remember he is a carpet cleaning guy) and then started breaking the ice near the eaves trough with a mallet to make sure that there wasn’t a clog in the pipes. He then went back inside walked through the whole house with me to check to see if there was any other damage (remember again he is a carpet cleaner). After that he spent over an hour cleaning my son’s carpet and then offered to leave his huge fan to ensure that the carpet was really dry. I in turn offered to bring the fan back when the carpet was dried and he said not to worry he would come back another day to get it. My next phone call was to my neighbour, who happens to be a window installer (who replaced many of our windows in the past few years). He also came over and checked the inside and outside of the home and suspected that it was probably the roof that was leaking and not an issue with the eaves troughs. I thanked him and then he went on his way. My third phone call was to a general contractor that has done several projects in our home over the past 15 years. We told him what was happening and how we were very concerned as the water was entering the home and now we had noticed that there was slight water damage in our dining room downstairs. We knew that there was another winter/rain storm on the way and could not imagine what the night would bring. He and his partner literally dropped everything (were in the middle of pouring concrete on a new home) and came right over. Within minutes he was on the roof and told us that there was a hole in a few of the shingles and the ice and water had forced the shingles to expand and water was coming through the roof. He then patched the roof and told us that he would come back in the spring to fix the roof permanently.
You may ask yourself why I am telling you this entire story. I am telling this story because ALL of these individuals dropped everything that they were doing to come and help me and my family at a moment’s notice. I was overwhelmed with gratitude today and so appreciative for what these individuals did going above and beyond to make sure that my family remained safe and happy. Why did they come? I believe they came because we have been as nice as possible to them over the years. I treat them exactly how I would wish to be treated, with the utmost RESPECT. I told my children this story as they came home from school today, as one of the greatest life lessons. If you are nice to people they will return that favour and be nice to you, do unto others as you would have them do unto you. My kids came to me yesterday saying that they were nominated for feed the deed on Facebook and Instagram and therefore they had to do something nice for someone in need. I told him them it was a very nice gesture, but more importantly we should try to be nice to people every day of our lives, not just at that one moment in time. I will continue to encourage my children to do good deeds, and they will fulfill their nominations from Facebook and Instagram. I am so impressed with how good deeds have travelled and I only hope that it will continue and we will think of how we treat others on a daily basis.
As an event planner, how is this relevant to anything that I do? I believe that you can be nice and treat people, clients, and other vendors with the respect that they deserve. There are so many stressful situations in my line of work; whether it is the client’s family situation, the stress of all of the planning, the details of the event or the emotions that can overwhelm them at that moment in time. There are times when things may not go exactly as planned, but it is how you deal with the situation that is most important and what the client will remember forever. So, my advice is to treat your vendors with respect, be honest and trust that they will do everything in their power to make your event a success. Your respect and common courtesy will go way beyond any amount of money that you can give; it will almost guarantee them going the extra mile for you just as these people did for me today.