Saturday, April 16, 2011

Are We Too Convenient For The Copy Cat Planner?

It's that time of year! The wonderful brides we started with over 300 days ago are ready to make that dash down the aisle. Girls' don't forget the groom on your way back!

Some call planning the test of how you and your significant communicate. I would tend to agree with this 99% of the time. They say to "choose your battles". Ladies, this does hold some truth. Trust me on this one.

I love when our clients allow for whimsical/extravagent design and personality! To show the creativity they have invested in to their guests is beyind the best feeling ever! You have no idea how wonderful this feels for me personally and those who have been your partner in crime. Sometimes we may plan 2 years in advance. There is so much that can happen during this time and the details are amazing. Sometimes, this can be too long and can make anyone a bit crazy waiting to execute the plans that we have put together during this time.

BUT...It does work out every time!

We know that every couple wants a wedding that is reflective of their relationship. "A true one of a kind". Those who know of me understand my goal in keeping this promise, I do take this very seriously. Some things may not be 100% possible and may seem like the icebreaker for the "wow" factor.

The decor, dress, rings, shoes, floral, music, venue, limo, makeup, rented tuxes and etc dosen't make or break the marriage. These items don't determine who you are. They are what one envisions for an important occasion. And is not a good enough reason to place such pressure on yourself. Decor is not a need, but your happiness with friends and family there with you is.

There are only 2 proven items that are considered "Perfect" One is chocolate and the other is when you steal someones heart.

Speaking of the desire to be different, I too would like to be noted for the unique vision and incredible passion I hope to share with our peers about our past clients. I'm not looking to share this information unless you truly care about your clients.

Some of what I have shared and then "witnessed", doesn't show this off in the best light. Why you ask? I see those who are just luring them in based on lies (pr maybe what you hope to have). The client today is going to figure out your experiemce level once you open your mouth. There is never an exception to this rule.

Your not going to be giving the client the same service. Trust me, they can see right through you.

We live in a world where most things pertaining to "being the best" at the job or the sport etc, are the main focus, They are thought to be a priority with anything one might encounter. I would be lying if I said I wasn't irritated by this.

I've spent many years trying to grow my business and focus on items that deem to be more important than the issues that happen on a regular basis. Items such as SABOTAGE and PLAGIARISM. Don't mind the caps with the words, I'm expressive what can I say?

These are words that happen everyday and leave one thinking that if they're going to succeed in this industry, they're going to have this in life whether they like it or not. I don't like it. I don't/won't accept it & I do believe this can be fixed.

Your probably wondering what is "she" going to say this week, right? What type of drama will she share? Well the good news is I'm not going to share anything negative. This is truly to share an experience.

There are those who can sway a client away from those who may charge more for services. The "Swayers" may make themselves appear as successful, but we the "seasoned professionals", can smell you a mile away. It's like a letter I read in Feb 2011 about an employee of mine, taking a client and charging her way more than she deserves and stating, if they decide to use you, they can save a whopping 10%. Wow..Yep. This happened to me this year.

You know that saying that some people can sell a dog crap? Or even better, They have a great investment in the swamp-lands of FL to sell you? You don't need to worry about me brides and grooms, you need to worry about those listed in the swamp.

Funny mention...

There is now a site called, Yes, they will send shit to anyone who has been a shit for the amazing investment of $19.95 and $9.99 shipping and handling. I should have bought stock in this one. I have dealt with some "shit" earlier this year.

This is part of the crap...I had to "eat" in order to get stronger...

COPY CAT "TOP 2" in 2011!!!!

Simply Glamorous Events"
This is a event planning company which is owned by Nellie Rodriguez Link is Nellie took my planning course last year June 2010. She failed every quiz and made some rather "stupid" decisions when I was kind enough to invite her to a book release party to make some extra money serving items to guests. The pay was quite generous and we were happy to have her join us.

She mentioned she needed to make extra money on a few occassions and well, I wanted to help. This was a last minute ask and was happy it worked out. Well, not really. It really didn't work out. Why? Well Nellie had to meet someone at her home due to some flooding issues. She did not share this with us. She had her sister take her place. Wow, I have never been more embarrassed and just upset about her decision to NOT share this last minute change. Why on earth would one do a "switcharoo" with a family member who has NEVER trained with me? I did not sign off on this and for one to assume I would be OK? This "action" definitely assured me that she never listened to what I said in class and why she felt the "Ala Carte' area was a package.That was commical! Beware of Glamourous Events in NJ folks...

Nellie thought I should be grateful that she found someone to take her place. Well, I see things a bit differently. Her sister was late, upset my agent due to her inability to handle a simple task of passing appetizers. That was a poor reflection of me. She also knew that my agent would NOT be reimbursing this help for a week. I was kind enough to ask her sister that she was not going to be paid for a week. I offered to pay for the sister I have never met. She did not even have $40 for the parking. That was additional and was reimbursed.

I should have known better than to expect that a student of Nellies capacity would be professional especially when she failed every test we had during the duration of the course. Yes,like I said above, she thought a-la carte was a package. She failed every test and with items that were truly just common sense.

I would say based on her "borrowing" of the exact wording of my packages and dishonest information about being in business for 10 years. I want to share that there are some items that are incorrect on purpose on the packages that were "borrowed". I think I will let Neliie the 10 year planner "vet" figure them out. However, I am not sure if she even knows what these items mean. Whatever.

I would just say beware on this one. She has little to NO experience and Those who lie about such things along with plagiarizing my programs, will lie about other things too. I would say thumbs down with Nellie Rodriguez. She doesn't have 10 years experience and she was not certified by me. Sorry.

Let's be clear, packages are not the "portal" of my or ones success. Twenty years would be the correct way to assume my experience level is at least 100% better and stronger than Nellies. Just Sayin'?

2. Belle Fete' Weddings. Jayme Knast Engelhardt. Jersey Shore Area

This particular situation, is most saddening for me. You hire those who seem to be genuinely honest and want everyone to succeed. You hope that when you allow someone to have a career with something that have been dreaming of that when they leave, they stay honest and leave with compassion/respect not burning bridges. I don't know where to begin. I will say, Jayme, doesn't have over 10 years in the event planning industry either. What is with the gals that take my course and lie about 10 years? It's easy to say this as she worked with me, and only me. So I know this to be true.

She also took my course and shortly after, I gave her what she wanted. Her very first wedding was on June 19th 2010. She did not prepare for this wedding as she was going through her own planning. I told her to relax, not worry about things. Any good boss or lead planner would only share the same respect and space as to her own clients , right?

I apologise to the many people who offered to work for experience at this particular wedding. They truly wanted to learn about this business.I would usually ask most to take the class as I have little time for a strong bit of training on a reg basis.

On the day of the largest/most detailed wedding we had last year, I made sure my entire staff base was trained VERY well. I think all 10 of my planners agree, they were prepared and reimbursed for an event that they did very little for. In fact, Mrs Knast mentioned to a few of our planners that she did not understand why she was there, there was nothing to do. I have never met someone who would ask that? Especially while this was a experience that most would give anything to observe and learn.

I think for me, having nothing major to do on the day of, is a good sign and showed I was prepared for a long time. I would guess if I were that bored, why didn't they leave? Why did you stay unless you saw the $$$ in the mirror. She obviously felt OK about excepting such a large sum for doing nothing as she stated. It must be me as I would never do that.

Life went on...We worked with many more clients and well...I thought we were OK? So I thought.

This email below, really disappointed me & was beyond words. Not only was my very own employee telling clients to send monies directly to her instead of me, but she also took the leads I had given to her and sold them as her own. I have attached the letter so for those who haven't really understood the issue, can see what I reviewed. How does one express such hurt? You don't. You vent to your friends and I think to share via blog...

Jane,(Client name listed below was hidden) I have to be honest, this was the only time I have ever had to deal with someone who stole from me and my company. And it's not just financial, it's leads, contracts and verbiage taken from my own clients that trusted her.

Dear Jane,

I was thinking after we got off the phone........since you are utilizing mine and (another planner of mine) services for 90% of your wedding, wouldn't it make sense to go directly through our other company? We do work separately from Samantha's company from time to time, especially if we are doing most of the work on an account and we feel that we can save the client some extra $$$$.

As far as the design, we have the same capabilities and resources as Samantha and would be able to fully design your wedding, everything we spoke about would remain the same, but we can do it for 10% less, so that would mean that option #2 would be $3,000 instead of $3350. We are able to charge a bit less because we use our own overhead and supplies from our homes, and not Samantha's office.

However, as far as the reveal for the design goes, we can still utilize the space in Summit so you can see what you would be getting. Other meetings we can use my office in Point Pleasant since that is closer for you :)(This is not Jayme's office, this is where she works part-time FYI).

It's a DJ/Entertainment company. A very nice person owns this company and sadly, due to this, we are no longer friendly). It's actually a bit odd when we speak now. It's hard to find "real" friends/business contacts in the event world. I have a wonderful following and despite my thoughts, such as this one, they still respect what I have accomplished.

Wait there is more to the letter:

Again, nothing that we spoke about would change, except for the fact that (Blank) and I would also be handling your design ideas, as opposed to Samantha, AND you will be paying less $$$$. If this is of any interest to you, please let me know! The decision is all yours, but just trying to save ya some moolah :)
(Moolah? I want you to understand, this is not the way we talk in the event industry. This is how a truck driver/used car salesperson might work, not my employees.
Have a great night and I hope you feel better soon!!!


Other emails from Mrs Knast to various leads and to my own clients were also quite disturbing. Trust is a VERY important thing in our industry. If you don't stay true to who you are and you feel "entitled" You should allow your client to go elsewhere. They use our service to be stress free. I'm here to assure you, they will have nothing less than stress free.

I have to ask, do you know what it feels like to have an employee take your new client contract and eliminate your logo, info and replace with theirs? I cannot describe the hurt and "unsettled" feelings. There are just no words for this. Do you know what it feels like to read emails to clients about being "less"?

The problem with having your own company and being passionate about all that you do is that you think with your heart and you expect that everyone else will follow. I have worked very hard to get to where I am in life and with my career. It's much too important to allow for this to happen again. I finally have the team I need. The ones who don't care about the income first. They think of the client. Isn't that how it should be?

I did make this easy for Jayme. I trusted, I did not stay at the office everyday. I did allow for her to take a lot. Some might say if I was there more often, maybe I could have prevented this. I do not have regrets, my time in the field, and reconnecting with life was the best decision I made.

If it wasn't for a "fluke" situation, I may not have discovered this. I cannot thank our vendors, employees and even our clients who approached me and shared this information. Why would someone try to sabotage a successful teacher? That is what I was. I can only assume it plays along with the I am "entitled" attitude she portrays. In some ways I can say, I did a great job with what she learned. I thought I was teaching morals, my teachings were used to be deceitful who would ever use a client who entrusts you with such a special day? Jayme would.

I would ask if you have been told to mail a check to Mrs Knast and/or paid her in cash, check made to cash and or Pay Pal, please contact Samantha Goldberg immediately. Jayme Knast does not have an office in Point Pleasant (Her living quarters,yes). She is a employee for a entertainment company as well as a planner on the side. The entertainment company covers DJ/MC and various enhancement products. She is no longer with Samantha Goldberg and Co/Gold Events LLC as of Feb 8th 2011.

Jayme's experience level is novice (Beginner) with no formal design training. She worked with less than 10 weddings during her employment with SG&Co. Jayme has not been in the event and catering industry for ten years. That is incorrect information. She worked as a restaurant manager prior to accepting employment and planned her own wedding.

We do have documentation that she is currently using my companys contractual agreements and programs. This written agreement does not belong to Mrs Knast and is the sole property of Samantha Goldberg and Co.

I do not want to cause havoc, I want to show the truth. I do not mind that she is now friendly with the 2 vendors that we no longer work with. I can only hope that they never have the same issue. Again, they may right this very moment. I will say any pretty face can hide this and I thought I was good with scams. I guess I was not good enough.

This posting was not used to be vindictive. My sole purpose is to allieviate some of the after effects that this has left me with. I do have a heart and she broke it. I will do whatever I can to prevent anything of this nature to happen to those I do business with in the future.

With regards to the "friends" I thought I had lost, well I guess they were never my friends. That is also a hard lesson to learn. I did bring certain companies to another level. I know they have not forgotten this and will not lose sight of our workings. They can't, it was a good thing.

It really was. I now have new teams and new goals...They are much stronger than I imagined. Who would have thought it could get better? Not me.


Wendy said...

WOW! How outrageous!! And, how brave of you to expose them for what they are. I can't imagine being that blatant with their thievery. I'm sure there are many more, some here where I am, doing the same things. What a shame that a person of your caliber should be so badly abused for your kindness.

Kenneth Stillman said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Samantha said...

Kenny, the list has JUST begun..I had hoped to DROP the ball like on NYE...It's more like I'm going to drop the bomb now.

Writing is VERY tricky. Esp from a legal stand point. You can only state facts. Not only have I stated facts, but I showed them too. kenny #3 is coming...I have more! hard to believe that over 20 other websites have taken my info too. It's a compliment when it's taken to better someone else w/o posting etc. It's a kick in the face , when these young "bucks" of the world use it for monetary gains.

I devote my time to ensuring our clients recieve fab service. There's another "calling" for me. To give back to my peers that aspire to be the next "best" fancy pants somebody! Those who play it safe standing behind me, will fail. I do serve as a warning to others and yes, I'm nutty. It's who I am & it's not going to change, as it works. Feel free to comment & join me on what could be the best road trip EVER!

Not That Sassi Planner Again???

Bling and Pearls Can Be The Icing on The Cake!

Bling and Pearls Can Be The Icing on The Cake!
Too Good Too Eat.

Just admit it, I say off the wall things...And it works!