Pink Ribbons and Scattered Feathers

Posted by on Feb 8, 2012 | 0 comments

It’s been quite a week.

When the Komen for the Cure debacle began, I was stunned. I am a long time supporter of Komen’s 3-day Walks. I’ve crewed these events and each time I have has been life changing.

As the minutes, then hours, then day passed without the Komen organization issuing a response of any kind to the public outcry following their ill-advised choice to withdraw funding support from Planned Parenthood, I was (literally) shaking my head in disbelief.

Ultimately, the poor choice made by Komen leadership was corrected with a public apology, a reinstatement of promised funding to Planned Parenthood, and the resignation of a key senior manager on the Komen leadership team.

Life will go on for Komen, but it won’t be coming up pink roses for quite some time, and there is a lot of damage control still to be done. It’s hard to take back words and change public perception, even when you publicly reverse a decision.

As it became more and more evident that Komen had failed to plan appropriately, my daughter and I were planning like the crazed wedding planners we have suddenly become. Our event planning skills definitely came in handy as we worked through the mile-long checklist of “pre-I do” to-do’s.

Based on the bride’s long dreamed-of ambiance and theme (brand) for her wedding, she has already searched out and chosen the perfect venue, set the date, and mailed beautiful save the date cards. And the groom’s parents have already chosen and reserved a charming restaurant for the rehearsal dinner.

So, this week it was just Kalen and I focused on details: she found her dress (yes, Mom cried) and bridal jewelry, we stumbled upon amazing beauticians for hair, make-up, and nails, we chatted with the baker about the wedding and cake as if we were long lost friends, we determined that we can have the flowers arranged for much less than a designer florist would charge, and the bride and groom are now ready to book tastings with several possible caterers. The DJ  is selected, although not yet reserved. Although tempted to become tourists, we stayed focused and accomplished so many things in one week that we are still stunned. And there’s still much to do, but with the wedding scheduled for 8 months in the future, we are feeling good.

As we wandered the charming historic downtown of Leesburg, Virginia today, the power of networking could not be overlooked. We were given the name of the (now chosen) baker by our waitress at the charming rehearsal dinner restaurant. The unique plan for the flowers came from the hair stylist. The nail salon recommendation came from the baker. We met with every one of these vendors personally, and because of their (and our) networking, we were pleasantly surprised at every turn and with every new person we met. They were professional and honest with us, and we were clear about our goals and preferences too.

And we talked, to everybody. And they treated us as if we lived there and were part of the community. We felt like we had been visiting with old friends after speaking with nearly every vendor. We did not commit to anything, although the bride is pretty certain what her choices will be. She wants to share everything with her fiance and mull things over a bit before making these decisions and signing on the dotted line.

It’s been an amazing and rewarding week, and I want to share the TOP 16 lessons I learned:

  1. Be vigilant in protecting your brand.
  2. Don’t get distracted. Stay on mission.
  3. Be Transparent.
  4. Communicate. And be timely in your communication.
  5. Every Decision Matters.
  6. Titles Should Not Be Synonymous with Authority.
  7. Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail.
  8. Events Are More than Well-Planned Parties.
  9. It’s Not What You Know, It’s Who You Know.
  10. Celebrate Life’s Milestones.
  11. Success is A Process.
  12. Be Authentic.
  13. Scattered Feathers are Impossible to Gather.
  14. Expensive does not mean “Best”.
  15. Perception is Reality to the One Perceiving.
  16. Choice is everything.
I hope you have a great week. Remember to always Choose wisely.

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