1. Introduction: What's your story?
Hello! My name is Tanza Cooper. I am the Founder and Creative Director of LeeHenry Events LLC. While stationed in the Washington, DC area with my husband who was in the military at the time, I started planning bridal and baby showers for my office. Soon after, attorneys and other staff from other departments requested my help in planning events for their offices. I decided to get a Professional Certificate of Event Management from George Washington University. After the Event Management courses along with a few events under my belt, I feel deeper in love with events.
Fast forward to a few years while stationed in Atlanta, I started helping two ladies who owned a wedding planning business. My love for the "pretty", the anticipation of the bride walking down the aisle to the first dance became a big part of why I started planning weddings. In 2007, I decided to officially start my business, LeeHenry Events LLC.
2. What's your experience as a wedding planner? How many weddings have you planned?
My company is based in Nashville but I plan weddings in other destination cities as well. Each year, my number of weddings vary but I try to book a maximum of 10 full service weddings per year, in order to give my clients the full focus they deserve.
Customer service is a big part of my business. In addition to my admin positions over the years, my experience with helping another wedding planning company in Atlanta gave me a true insight into what and how to take care of my couples. I not only learned how to coordinate a wedding but how to take care of the families and guests as well.
3. What sorts of services do you offer (month-of coordination, full-service planning, or à la carte planning)?
I offer Full Service Wedding planning which is A to Z planning and my most booked service. The full service wedding planning service also includes my design service where I help couples with a design concept that encompasses the look and feel of their wedding. My second service is Wedding Management which is also known as month-of coordination where I step in approximate 6 to 8 weeks prior to the wedding to logistically tie together the bride and groom's plans.
4. How do payments work (a percentage of the wedding budget, a flat fee etc.)? What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?
Every couple will have different needs and are in various stages in their planning process; therefore I present each couple with their own custom quote after a complimentary consultation.
5. Who else is in your team and how many people on your staff will be at the wedding?
I have a total of six people on my team. I staff each wedding depending upon logistics such as number of guests, set-up logistics, break down logistics, number of bridal party members to manage, if ceremony and reception are in the same venue or different venue, etc. On wedding day, there is always a lead planner and at least two assistants for each wedding.
6. What happens if you're sick or otherwise unable to be there on the day of the wedding?
I've never missed a wedding but in case this ever arise, I do have a team of assistants who are more than capable of handling the logistics of the day. However, I also have formed some close relationships with other wedding planners in the Nashville area who own their own businesses. I can also reach out to them, if needed.
7. How many meetings will you have with the couple and how will they be involved?
For my full service clients, our meetings usually take place via phone, email or zoom calls. I schedule all of the vendor and venue meetings and try to attend as many as possible. I leave the dress fitting and tux fittings to the couple and their bridal party/family along with their engagement photos. However, I try to attend as many other meetings as possible.
For my wedding management clients, they plan and schedule all of their meetings with their vendors. They plan and I execute. Within the 6 to 8 weeks prior to the wedding as I step in, I will have as many meetings with the couple as needed. Our first stop is usually at the venue so that I can fully understand their vision.
Some couples already have an idea of certain vendors they would like to book. For other vendors needed, I make the recommendation to each couple. I recommend vendors based on budget and vision. I always let me couples know that it's their choice and if they don't feel my recommendation is a good fit, I will recommend other vendors.
8. Will you handle the invitations, from wording and ordering to the addressing and mailing? What about guest list coordination and RSVPs?
I do not normally handle invitation design, wording or addressing. I encourage couples to book one of my invitation designers who are experts in this area.
For my full service clients, RSVP management is included in their service. For my wedding management clients, RSVP management can be added as an additional service.
9. Do you handle rentals? Will you coordinate delivery, arrival and set up times with the photographer, the florist, the musicians and the caterer/banquet manager?
I create a detailed minute by minute wedding day timeline (production schedule) that includes the coordination of the arrival and set up times for all vendors, brides, groom, family and bridal party.
Leading up to the wedding, I create the rental order for my full service clients based on their rental needs. In the Nashville area, there are many venues that don't offer tables and chairs which leads to a full rental order. For my wedding management clients, the client is responsible for creating the rental order based on their needs but I do check the order before the wedding to ensure every item needed shows on the order.
10. Can you create a timeline that tells everyone involved in the planning process (other pros, members of the wedding party, to-be-weds and families) what to do and when to do it? How will you make sure everyone sticks to the schedule?
I create a minute by minute timeline (production schedule) to keep everyone on track. My team and I remind vendors along with the bride, groom, bridal party and family throughout the day of the schedule. We don't expect them to memorize the schedule so we give constant reminders of what's happening next on the schedule.