Friends Don't Hire Friends

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You might be tempted to hire a friend to perform a duty for your wedding or at least ask them for free services.  Don’t.

Of course there’s the chance that it could go well, they do a great job, have a wonderful time, and everybody lives happily ever after.  That’s a definite possibility.  It’s also a definite possibility that your request backfires and the whole thing goes down in flames.

This is a tricky situation and so many different things could go wrong that it isn’t worth it.

Here are five reasons why you shouldn’t have friends as wedding vendors:

They’re unskilled.  Just because they can cook for their family doesn’t mean that they can cook for your guest list of 150.  The sheer scale of catering is overwhelming and it’s a definite talent.  Same with baking a three tier cake, doing hair and makeup for ten people, and coordinating the whole shebang.  The pros are pros because they can handle it.

They’ll work too much or too little.  It’s difficult to be both a guest and a service provider at the same time.  You’ll have a hard time communicating your expectations to your friend/vendor.  Do you want them to work the whole time?  If so, then they’re not a guest.  Do you want them to come as a guest and spend a few minutes doing this task?  If so, then they’re not providing much of a service and they’re leaving you short.

Don’t take advantage of people.  There’s a thin line between asking for somebody’s help and taking advantage of them.  That line is hard to determine.  It’s one thing to ask someone to take a few photos.  It’s another thing to have them take a few thousand.

Money between friends can be weird.  Paying your friends for their skills is a weird, tricky thing.  The same goes for the required contracts that need to be signed with your wedding pros/friends.  It’s one thing to treat friends to dinner.  It’s another to pay them a few thousand dollars for their assistance.

Good way to lose a friendship.  If there’s any miscommunication, it can create conflict that remains long after the wedding.  This happens more often with wedding-aiding friends than you’d think.  If your friend doesn’t do what you expected of them, it’ll create resentment that isn’t likely to go away anytime soon.

Here are some rules of thumb for you:

*If somebody offers to help, you can take them up on their offer or don’t.  If a friend volunteers to be your MC, don’t follow that up with a request to DJ for four hours.  Those are two very different amounts of work.

*If your friend is a real professional wedding vendor, as in they do it for a living, don’t ask them to perform their services for free at your wedding.  That’s rude and you’re taking advantage of them.  Either invite them as a non-working guest or hire them.

*If your wedding pro friend offers to perform their services for free, you may take them up on it.  They offered so they should be prepared to follow up on that.

*If a non-professional friend offers to help, thank them and pass.  The five reasons above come into play.  You don’t want to lose a friend over this.

You should realize that the love of your friends and family is more important than money.  Spend the money to hire wedding pros and don’t risk something going wrong that could jeopardize the love and respect of your friends and family.


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