Wedding Planning Revealed

Some ‘work from home’ careers are jobs where you’re so active that you don’t spend much time at home at all! Being a professional wedding planner is one of those jobs. Wedding planning is a specialised type of event management role, requiring precise attention to detail and the ability to work efficiently, often while multi-tasking, to a definite deadline. This also may sound very similar to project management.

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When Tania Nursiah left her stressful job as director of an investment bank in the City of London to found wedding planning business Orange Blossom in St Albans, Hertfordshire, she transferred superb project management skills to her new career, which turned out to be invaluable.

Flexible Working

“I was used to working in a pressurised deadline-driven environment, and to get every single facet of a project working and ready on time, which essentially is very similar to planning a wedding!” says Tania. “I needed a more flexible working environment so I could work from home when necessary to look after my new family, and as it turned out I was especially suited to wedding planning. I’m a romantic at heart too, and had the best day ever on my wedding day, so now I can help other people enjoy every moment of their special day! I find it very rewarding and fulfilling.”

As for working from home, wedding planning involves hours of talking to and visiting wedding suppliers, and researching possible venues, so Tania is kept on her feet. “Not everything can be arranged by email or on the phone, I’m out and about a lot some days. If a couple has a specific venue requirement, sometimes I have to go and see locations for myself to check they fulfill the family’s needs.”

No Pressure

I ask Tania why people choose to hire a wedding planner. “It’s easy to lose the joy in anticipation of a wedding if you feel overwhelmed by all the tasks and you have to research, plan and organise,” she tells me. But if you have a professional wedding organiser, she explains, they will take the strain and pressure off the shoulders of the happy couple, meaning that the run up to the event, and the day itself, can be enjoyed by the whole family, the couple themselves and all the guests.

“It’s more than event management,” says Tania. “It also may involved guidance and a kind of counselling too, as you take the couple under your wing, so to speak, and make sure that their dreams of the day are fulfilled, as well as the needs of the family according to tradition, and the comfort and enjoyment of the guests.”

Inspiring Ideas

A lot of wedding events these days take on a theme, and if you don’t know yet what you want, wedding planners like Tania are usually brimming with ideas to help in the planning and preparation stages.

Tania can supply barrowloads of ideas and inspiration for the couple who may be unsure of ceremony and reception venue, style and theme of their wedding. “I can always suggest suitable locations, themes and colour schemes for the celebration, depending on the couple’s budget, tastes, interests, and fashion style,” Tania says, “so my customers don’t have to worry if they haven’t got a clue what to do when they first get engaged.”

“There are so many different variables to plan even if you don’t want a special theme or style, but sometimes it can help you choose wedding outfits, type of cuisine, venue location and other aspects like the music played at the reception and style of invitations, venue decoration and even the wedding presents.”

Smooth Running

From a large traditional church or cathedral-style wedding, to a smaller more intimate or private registry office or other wedding location ceremony, Tania can ensure everything runs smoothly on time and there are no mishaps like the rings being misplaced, the music not playing or the mother of the bride not receiving flowers.

“I’m the person who allows the bride and groom to breathe a sigh of relief and be confident in knowing that everything will fall into place on the day. I also save them a significant amount of time in the planning process, which is a great bonus for many couples working full-time, for example, who can’t devote the average estimated 400 hours involved in planning a wedding and all its details.”

If you’re interested in training as a wedding planner, there are a number of colleges and organisations that offer courses, both online and in-house, including the Wedding Planner School, which you can visit at http://www.theweddingplannerschool.org.uk/

Tania offers a range of packages and prices for Orange Blossom’s wedding planning services. Visit Orange Blossom at http://orangeblossom.co.uk/.

Working With a Pets Franchise

Looking for ideas for businesses that you can run from home? If you have loads of energy, love being active and kept on your feet, and have a passion for animals, there is one really fun and dynamic franchise business you can run from home. How about starting a pet sitting business as part of a franchise?

This is a really great career idea for anyone who wants to escape from the corporate nine-to-five desk job to do something that really matters to them instead. Or if you’re already working from home, and find you have extra time on your hands or you’re working part-time, you may even be tempted to fit pet sitting in with your other at-home job.

Making Good Money

Pet sitters and dog walkers are in higher demand than ever before, so you could potentially make really good money, and have fun in the process. When you start working as a pet sitting franchise business, you also take on the good reputation of the franchise name, which establishes instant trust and a good reputation in the minds of your customers.

Pet Sitting Tips

Pets, Homes and Gardens, based in Horsham, Sussex, is a pet sitting franchise business set up by Julie and Peter Maxted over thirteen years ago. Julie and Peter have lots of pets themselves, and originally started their own pet day care business when they realised how difficult it was to find quality pet care to look after their animals when they were away from home or going on holiday.

As they were both looking for a career change in their working lives, they took the plunge and started to provide pet care locally. Their services were welcomed by local pet owners and Peter and Julie quickly became really busy. “We also had a young family at the time, so couldn’t really accommodate all the business that was rapidly coming our way as word of mouth spread about us,” says Julie. “We soon realised that the pet care business was something you could either treat as part-time work or if you had the time, could turn into a full-time career.”

Dream Opportunity

Peter continues, “It was like a dream opportunity to work at something we both loved, and after five successful years, we sat down and began thinking how great it would be to help others out on the path to running a similar fulfilling business. That was when we decided that the best way to do this was to become a franchise.”

Pets, Homes and Gardens offers it franchisees the best start you could hope for to start a professional pet day care and business. This includes expert training, customer service and customer care strategies, comprehensive and detailed documentation on legal, sales, financial, accounting and marketing processes, plus a monitored Google Adwords campaign with regular reports.

Business Support

“We also offer ongoing business support and growth and development advice, plus access to our website forum where all franchisees can swap experiences and advice with each other,” Julie adds. “And of course everyone gets our high-quality shirts and fleece jackets to wear while dog walking!”

What’s even better is the small initial outlay fee that we charge for becoming a franchisee,” Peter says. “Some franchises demand thousands for members to join, but we only ask £495, plus a monthly franchise fee. We want to attract people who will really love what they do, and will welcome the opportunity to go into business as a pet sitter and dog walker. People like this may not have huge amounts of money to join, and we could potentially change their lives by giving them a job they love.”

Working Systems

“In other words,” Julie adds, “people who are like us when we started out all those years ago! By giving our franchisees all our financial, accounting and legal systems, we’re basically offering efficiently functioning processes that it took us years to get right, and to get working effectively.”

Peter chips in, “These instant systems, plus our training, documentation and all-round support will get our franchise businesses up and running right away. And attracting those all-important first customers should be easy because our franchisees has an established national brand so people can be certain that their lovely pets – who of course are members of the family – will be cared for by certified pet sitters with an established reputation.”

Taking a fresh start by starting a business with this franchise sounds like the kind of opportunity that could change your life. How wonderful to earn money doing what you love!

To find out more about starting a franchise with Pets, Homes and Gardens, go to http://www.petshomesandgardens.co.uk/ or visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ThePetSittingFranchise

Home Colours

Your home and your car should be welcoming spaces that you feel comfortable and at ease when you’re in them. You may have previously thought that there’s nothing you can do about the level of light or privacy that both your rooms at home and the interior of your car give you, but there is something you can do to provide privacy, protect you from solar rays and add strength and security to your windows.

A layer of window tinting film can do all three of the above, helping to transform the ambient light that enters through glass, and to control the transparency of your windows, to shield you from prying eyes.

Practical and Cheap

Window tinting is a cheap and practical alternative to replacing window glass or installing blinds and curtains, and is quick to apply if you’re an expert.

It’s especially important when you’re working from home to optimise the light coming through your residential windows and applying a layer of coloured or opaque window film could be just the solution for the room you use as a home office. As an example, how does using a layer of coloured window film in a calming tranquil blue colour appeal to you, if that could help you relax and find inspiration? Or a yellow shade, to energise and motivate you? Or red, to spur you into action? Window film comes in a wide range of colours for every mood, and its effect is dramatic.

“Window colour has been found to affect productivity,” says Martin Schlatter, manager at St Albans-based Tintmaster, a glass tinting and film solutions specialist company.

Boost Productivity

“Some businesses who own the commercial buildings where we’ve applied window film in the past, have discovered that employees focus on their work for longer periods of time if they’re in a more pleasant environment, and window film is an imaginative alternative to blinds, which can be fussy to use with tangled cords in a working space. Window film can keep the glare of the sun out just as well, and can also provide protection from UV rays, all without reducing the amount of daylight in the room. You get more natural light to see what you’re doing – and to keep you awake and alert!”

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Adding an aspect of privacy to a working space can be vital for productivity too. If you’re working from home, you may be in a basement with a ground-level window or in a garden office, both of which could be overlooked from the street or neighbours. Opaque window film can give you the privacy you need to concentrate and focus better, and not get distracted by who’s walking past outside. You could also use a mirrored-effect layer of film, which allows you to look out, but when people look in they just see a reflection of themselves. This is also useful if you don’t want anyone to know about the computers or other equipment you use in your home working surroundings.

More Benefits of Home Window Tinting

Privacy on the Move

It’s also an eye-opener to know how easy it is to get that plush executive look in your car without having tinted windows already put in place. Vehicle window tinting is increasingly popular these days, and if you go to a company like Tintmaster, installation is fast, efficient and trouble-free.

“If you can’t get to our workshop, we can collect your car for you, apply the window film, and drive it back to you, a delivery service that our customers love,” says Martin. The car window film comes in a selection of shades so you can opt for a smoky grey this is still see-through to an executive black that blocks all view of the car’s interior. “It also stops the sun ruining the upholstery in your car, just in case you had deeply coloured leather seats that you didn’t want to fade.” And of course, the car’s occupants are protected from potentially damaging solar rays too!

Anti-Shatter Glass

“Another type of window film that not many people know about is safety window film, that helps building owners meet glass safety and security regulations,” says Martin. “A layer of this type of film will make sure that broken glass doesn’t shatter everywhere, so in public buildings like schools and hospitals, it’s invaluable if a window is damaged.”

As a working from home advocate, I always like to hear of ways you can easily enhance your surroundings and just make your home a nicer more attractive and safer place to be. Window tinting sounds like a straightforward way to do that.

For more information on Tintmaster, visit http://www.tintmaster.co.uk/