When you’re a wedding pro, it can be hard (read: anxiety-inducing) to think about stepping away from your work. Because, when your career is centered around making sure other people have what they need, when they need it, being out of the office can make you feel like balls are going to drop, things will slip through the cracks or one of your couples will be left feeling ignored. The thing is, it’s not possible for you to work all day, every day and you can find yourself hitting pause for personal or professional reasons. Today, then, we wanted to help make sure you can block your calendar and set an out of office without the stress. Read on for a checklist of things to do and swipe copy to help you get it all done.
What to do before leaving for vacation
Stepping away from work for a personal vacation isn’t something many people do. In fact, Americans are notorious for not taking time off from work. But, scheduling a long weekend or vacation is not only important but necessary so you can stay motivated and inspired about your work. So, when you are in the process of planning some time off, here are our tips to help you avoid feeling like you’re going to come back to a mess on the other side.
Communicate your vacation early
As soon as you have confirmed dates for your vacation, communicate them with your couples and any pros you are working closely with. Like many things, more lead time is always a good idea, and it may take more than one reminder for your vacation dates to register on their end.
Check-in with your couples
Do an extra check-in with your current couples to make sure you are leaving them in a good place, and that they know what to work on while you are out as well as when you’ll be back.
Give your clients emergency contact information
Send your couples a backup contact for urgent issues and communicate the process of getting in touch with them (but be sure to set a clear boundary about what constitutes an urgent issue!).
Give your open leads some attention
Check-in with any open leads to see if they are ready for the next step in your sales and booking process (without unnecessarily rushing them). If needed, put them in direct contact with someone who can answer any questions that come up while you are out.
Actually set up your out-of-office message
Set an out-of-office message so anyone contacting you isn’t left wondering why you haven’t replied. It’s best practice to include the date you start your vacation, when you return and who people can contact in case of an emergency (we’ve crafted one for you below!)
Change your voicemail, just in case
If you have a business phone number, consider changing your voicemail greeting to communicate the important details of your out of office
Pro-tip: You shouldn’t hesitate to take a vacation if you feel drained or burned out—if you need a mental break, take it!
What to do before a wedding weekend
Aside from taking a much-needed break (no justification needed), sometimes you are unavailable because of the weddings on your calendar. And while this could just be for a single day, it can also be for much longer (think: destination weddings or multi-day setups). So, even though you are definitely working, it’s important to give your other couples insight into your schedule. Here are tips to help you do that.
- You don’t need to let all of your couples know about your wedding ahead of time, but you should let any who are approaching their wedding date know (since they tend to have a lot of active tasks and conversations going on)
- Give them a point of contact in case they need something while you are focused on your other client’s wedding and tell them when you will be back in the office
- Set up an out-of-office message to let anyone who emails you know that you are concentrated on this wedding
- Change your voicemail greeting if this is a multi-day affair
Where to share your out-of-office dates
As we mentioned earlier, it takes a few tries to communicate your vacation or time away from the office to others. So, it is a good idea to share the information in different ways. Here are a few places you can consider sharing your dates.
- Schedule a social media post that uses a graphic to make sure it stands out on your grid
- In your email signature
- On the contact page of your website
To make preparing for your vacation or wedding weekends easy, we wanted to set you up with some swipe copy! Copy and paste the out-of-office email templates you see below and customize them to fit your needs.
Out-of-office message to let couples know you’re going on vacation
Hi Name and Name,
I hope you both are having a great week so far! I wanted to let you know I’ve just put a vacation on my calendar and will be out of the office from Date to Date.
I’ll be sure to check in with you a few times before taking off, but I also wanted to introduce you to Name. If anything comes up while I am out of town, Name is the person to reach out to. I’ve updated her/him/them on the important details about your wedding and she/he/they will be able to support you if something comes up.
When I return on Date, I’ll jump right back in and [insert details about what you’ll start with].
Let me know if you have any immediate questions, and I’ll be in touch!
Out-of-office email template to let couples know about a wedding weekend
Hi Name and Name,
I hope you both have been great since we last talked! I wanted to let you know I’ll be out of the office from Date to Date [or a single date] for a wedding. If anything comes up while I am out, Name is here to help (which I don’t expect anything to, but just in case).
Have a great rest of your week and I’ll be in touch after this wedding (and counting down to yours)!
OOO email auto-response swipe copy
Thanks so much for reaching out! I’m currently on vacation/out of the office for a wedding returning on Date. If you are a current client with an immediate need, please contact the team member I put you in touch with. If you are inquiring about my/our services, I will reply shortly after my return.
[OPTIONAL] If this is regarding the Last Name wedding, please call me on my cell since I am on-site.
Is your next vacation going to be during the holiday season? Here are 3 things you should avoid if you actually want to take the holidays off.
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