Hello friends and welcome back to another episode of our video blog series Hurry Up and Fail on the Tactical Entrepreneur.
I’m very excited about today’s episode because it’s something that I’ve been wanting to share. I haven’t shared because I’ve been a little bit afraid of how it would make me look. And frankly I feel a little bit embarrassed that it’s even happened. Not to mention this has happened to me TWICE.
And here I thought that I was so clever learning from my first mistake and years later I made that same mistake again. So today we are learning about that mistake. All right, mistake that I made on this episode is double booking yourself. Yeah, I know I’m not the only one and if you have ever double booked yourself ever, you can definitely raise your hand and let me know.
EVER DOUBLE BOOK YOURSELF??
For me, sure, every now and then I might double book myself for a meeting day or a photo session day. But then I would move things around or shift my schedule so things work out. However, this situation, not so much. I double booked myself on a wedding day. Yes, I double booked!! Two times this has happened where I’ve double booked a wedding day. The first time happened, it was one of my very first years in business and I had gone ahead and I had a business partner at the time, I was pursuing one client, she was pursuing another, I went ahead and booked one client for a particular client for a particular date and then the other client messaged back saying they were interested too and I had told my business partner that we were available and I failed to mention that I had already booked us for that day.
And there we had it, we had double booked a wedding date and I felt absolutely terrible. It was most horrible. It was one of the awfullest feelings I’ve ever felt when I’d know that I’ve signed agreements with two different people to document and photograph their incredible wedding day and I wasn’t able to be at two places at once. I was heartbroken and so luckily, in the beginning, there was myself and my business partner so we were able to split off because at that time we were equally the same person. Same skill sets, same photography styles, same posing them, everything. We did a lot of things together and therefore our knowledge base was very similar. So it’s a lot easier for us to split off and find assistants to work with us to photograph these weddings so that way we could give the same quality and caliber of work to our clients.
But here’s the tricky part. So I learned from that and I double checked everything and I made sure that I had a shared calendar with anyone that was on my team going forward so that way I always, always knew if I was double booked or not. Well then it happened again last year and I am so ashamed to even admit it but I think it’s important and it’s very valuable for you guys to know and understand that these mistakes happen and sometimes they happen a second time even though you’ve put every barrier in place. All of sudden something new happens, some new variable gets tossed into the mix and before you know it you’ve double booked yourself again. Last year, I was vacationing with my husband in Norway. This was our second time in Norway and I absolutely love it there. What everyone knows and it’s common sense but there’s a time difference between the central U.S. and Norway and I knew that there was a time difference and I really ultimately don’t work when you’re vacationed. That should be in a whole episode on it’s on.
If you’re on vacation do not work, do not check your emails, make sure that you have someone else that’s taking care of your things for you while you away and trying to enjoy yourself because that’s probably where my first mistake came in to begin with. It was late at night and we were resting from a long day of hiking. We had finally gotten back to the hotel and I decided to open up my computer and check my emails. So I get this lovely email and the email was amazing. The couple sounded absolutely wonderful and I hurried and I looked at my calendar and I looked and I said, “Oh my goodness, I’m available.” I had this date open and I can completely shoot their wedding. They sound amazing and I started chatting with them back and forth, back and forth and we went ahead, signed on the dotted line and we did everything online and before I knew it we were booked and ready to go.
And then I came home and pulled up my computer and realized that I had already had a wedding on that day and that I totally booked them by accident. And the reason why that happened is because of the time zone. My calendar was thinking a day ahead and when I looked at whether I was booked or not because everything synced to the current time zone I was physically in, it made it appear as if I had a wedding that Friday but not that Saturday. So when that Saturday wedding came in, I said, “Oh wow, I’ll just have a double header weekend. I’ll photograph two weddings this weekend.” Well, wrong, very, very, very wrong because that certainly hurt me because as soon as I realized that I went ahead and I called my poor bride and groom who were just amazing and I was able to offer a solution where I could have an associate photographer photograph at a slightly reduced rate and I would still take care of all the communications back and forth and I would also still take care of their post processing so that they get the exact finishing touches that I put on all of my wedding work.
DO NOT WORK ON VACATION
And it worked out great but again I felt awful. It was this feeling in the pit of my stomach and I just felt like I was the worst person in the world. So again, learn from your mistakes, learn from your failures but at the same time, sometimes you don’t know what to expect, sometimes there’s other variables and even if you have your calendar up to date take time to really look at everything. If you feel like there’s something missing, there probably is. If your gut instinct tells you, “I need to hold off on this,” listen to it because I’m not gonna lie, I thought to myself, “Huh, I wonder why I’m open that day? I didn’t think I was open that day and I checked my calendar. I double, double checked it and I thought … No, I am open that day. My calendar wouldn’t lie to me.” And it didn’t lie to me because with the time zone difference, it showed that my calendar was open that day ’cause it would be a different date if was shooting it in Norway time.
And luckily, I have the most amazing clients in the world that were super understanding and we were able to work something out but let me tell why. Sometimes we’re not that fortunate, sometimes we don’t get into those situations where we can really feel amazing about what’s happening at the end or at least feel even halfway decent about the mistake that we’ve made but I’m so glad that this mistake ended up working out in a way that was still beneficial to my client and made me not feel like the worst person on Earth because I certainly had felt that way for a very, very long time, even throughout the whole entire process. But that is what I have today, is double check your calendars, make sure that you aren’t double booking yourself. Give yourself time and even if you’re booking yourself for different things, don’t book yourself so close. Make sure that you leave some buffer room in between. If you have appointments, don’t be booking your appointments back to back to back to back because things run late and a lot of the times it is not on you that they’re running late.
Sometimes there are other forces of nature that are working against us on certain days or a client is running late or there’s an accident that happens on the road that causes us to become late and then we’re late to one appointment, which pushes us late to another appointment and so on and so forth. If you’ve ever been to the doctor’s office and had an appointment and ended up waiting and waiting and waiting because other appointments went late and got pushed and got pushed and eventually at the end of the day now it’s your appointment but since the doctor’s office is an hour behind, you’re stuck there waiting an hour, sometimes more before you even get into see your doctor. Let’s not do that in our business and in our lives. Let’s give ourselves a break, give ourselves that little bit of time, that buffer in between appointments and again don’t work when you’re on vacation.
If you’re on vacation, just be on vacation because if I would have just closed my eyes to the rest of the world and made sure that I either didn’t even bring my computer with me or turned it off or only just do non-work related stuff on my computer, I would have been completely fine. By the time I would have responded to that message, I would have realized I wasn’t available and everything would have been great. They would have been able to find someone just as amazing and not have had to deal with the debacle that I had inadvertently put them through. So there you have it. There is episode three of the Hurry Up And Fail Video Blog for you. I hope you can take some little bit of nugget from there and learn a little about, double, triple check your calendars and give yourself a little bit of grace. All right everyone, until next time, we will see you later.