I recently went from working photo booths in Orlando, Florida to event rentals in Tacoma, Washington. While moving across the country definitely provides you with a new perspective culturally and socially, changing positions within the event industry has given me a new perspective on events. Working for a photo booth company allowed me to go experience events first hand along side the guests. Most people rent photo booths as a “want” not necessarily out of “need.” It is that added bonus to their event that contributes to the overall guest experience, and leaves them with a memento to capture the occasion. When working various events I often got to interact with caterers, event planners, DJs, photographers and a plethora of other vendors but it tended to be on a more personal level or to simply communicate with one another to make sure we were on all the same page. My responsibility was just to make sure the guests had as much fun as possible (well and replace the paper when it ran out). Guest interaction was the foundation of my job, and I loved it. Some events you had to go a little more out of your comfort zone in order to make the guests feel comfortable to be silly in the booth, while others you had to be a little more assertive to make sure nothing got broken. While I saw a little bit of the behind the scenes action of set up and take down, I mostly just saw the “fun” in all events.
Moving into event rentals has been a change, challenge and a joy all in one. I came into the busy wedding season at American Party Place with little to no knowledge about event rentals, so I had to just jump right in. Every day I get to work with customers having a large variety of events from upscale weddings to casual family barbecues. We have those customers who come in knowing exactly what they need, and those who we are able to guide in the right direction to find what will work best for them. Most of the time our customers come in with a specific need, such as extra tables and chairs for their baby shower or a cotton candy machine for an elementary school fundraiser. Yet we also have the brides who come in to decide what linen colors work best and what votives will add the right touch to their centerpieces. The biggest thing I’ve been learning in this position is to anticipate exactly what our customers needs are and if unable to meet those exact needs being able to create an alternative solution that will work just as well. While working for the photo booth company, I got to meet some pretty awesome people, but expectations for how each event was going to go was about the same. Here at American Party, everyday presents new challenges and new expectations. I have digested a lot of information about frame tents, dance floors and pipe and drape over the past few months that I would have never expected to know but it has given me the opportunity to keep learn something new everyday and be able to help guests better daily.
Having the opportunity to work with different caterers and venues on a professional level has definitely given me a more behind the scenes look at events that most people don’t get to see or experience. Which I think most people would be shocked if they actually saw how much work goes into even smaller scaled events…HA! My move from Orlando to Tacoma has been an adventure, and the multi facets of the event industry are an even bigger adventure.