It’s chilly and cloudy outside our windows today. To be perfectly candid, I had a hard time getting motivated this morning. Usually I pop out of bed and hit the ground running (Daisy gets annoyed at what a cheerful morning person I can be). 😉 But after working hard to psych myself up I realized that I was forgetting the WHY today. Why do we work so hard at what we do? Why do we love what we do? Why do others allow us to capture their most intimate relationships with our photography? What drives us to seek out unique ideas and locations for shoots and creative new products for our clients? This week I’m going to let you in on one of our core drivers: Relationships.
Daisy and I love what we do because we love people. We met while working and living at a summer camp in NC. To those who have lived at a camp, you know that you can be stuck with people and their various personalities for months at a time. Sometimes this is easy, other times it can be sticky. Luckily having this background taught us that teamwork and the goal at hand is what matters most. I’m definitely an extrovert–I have yet to meet with someone who I can’t hold a conversation (okay, I regularly had notes sent home from school just for talking too much in class, if that tells you anything). While that was once considered a problem, and I’m now too old to be grounded, I love that my extroverted self can be used to work on the relationship sides of our awesome little company.
We are lucky to work in the wedding industry where relationships are at the core of what we do. Relationships with photographers, wedding professionals, our album and print companies and our clients are what matter most. Answering emails (and texts and FB messages and phone calls) matters to us. Sure, there are days when we get behind, but we’ve learned that the guilt that comes with that is just not worth it. Prompt service builds trust with our clients, shows that they matter, and helps us best understand their needs
We consider it such an honor to be able to build relationships with our clients over time. This winter, as we looked back on 2013, Daisy and I both noted the joy we had while photographing families for their holiday portrait shoots. For many, we had shot their weddings years before and have continued to be invited to capture the new chapters of their lives.
One family in particular invited us to shoot their maternity photos earlier in the year and then photograph their sweet growing family again for Christmas. In fact, just after this bride and groom were married in 2008, their first addition to the family was an energetic pup named–Daisy May…lovingly named after my Daisy (she gets embarrassed by this but secretly loves it)! So while our clients don’t necessarily have to name their children or pets after us (but hey we won’t object if you have the urge) it’s incredibly rewarding to know that our relationship has had an impact on others and vice versa. It’s WHY we do what we do.
Authenticity, Care, and Time
For those in a service industry, these are the three pillars to genuine business relationships. Being authentic with the people in our lives about who we are and what we do can be risky. Let’s face it, when you let down your guard and show your true self, there are no guarantees about how others will respond. We love to capture the genuine personalities of people through our photography and we’ve learned the best way to do that is by modeling it in how Daisy and I interact. As a husband and business partner building up my wife is my top priority. We’ve worked hard to understand each other’s strengths and weakness and to compliment rather than to compete (we are both naturally competitive so this is an ongoing lesson). 😉 We’ve also learned that when someone approaches us for our services they are beginning the conversation and we do not take it lightly. Those who choose to work with us do so because they enjoy us AND our photography.
So why do we do what we do? It comes down to one word for us. Relationships. Go find what energizes you, build it into what you do and I promise you won’t be disappointed.