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  • Writer's pictureTanneil

One Year Older, Smarter, and Happier

Before we knew it, we had owned and operated Esteem for one whole year. Where did the time go? It sure flew by for us! Between consultations, weddings, setting up events, and running from location to location, we missed our actual anniversary of the store.

Now, though, since things have slowed down just a little bit for us, we’re taking the time to reflect on this past year and what we learned. Some things were an eye opener, but we’re still happy to call ourselves small business owners!

Esteem’s First Year of Operation with Tanneil and Sandi

So where do we begin looking back? We had so many milestones we achieved in year one. Our biggest decision was to move our store from Smoky Lake to Vegreville to be closer to our homes and spend less time commuting. Setting up the new shop was interesting. We found out exactly how much inventory can fit into 2,700 sq ft of space. We thought it was enough, but had to bring in two seacans for overflow! Hosting our grand opening after was such a great experience. We loved that so many of you came to say hi and wish us well!

From August 1, 2017 to August 1, 2018, we serviced almost 100 events—97 to be exact. During this time, we also had our largest wedding to date, which was over 500 people. During this year’s peak wedding season, we had our work cut out for us. In August, we had 26 events/weddings!

As we got used to operating and running Esteem, our experience grew tenfold. We collaborated with other rental companies, learning some tricks of the trade and more efficient ways to do laundering and pressing. You can easily lose a day washing and drying the endless mountain of tablecloths, napkins, chair covers, etc. We also saw the start of many great work relationships, which will allow Esteem to provide a bigger variety of rental items and act as a one-stop-shop. Now, we can swap colors and rentals and easily bring them in for brides and other customers.

Esteem Year Two

Now that we have a year under our belt, we can start planning for bigger things, implement better ideas, and learn from our mishaps! In November, the two of us will be attending Wedding MBA, which is a convention with over 120 seminars geared to wedding professionals. We can’t wait to bring back with us some fresh, new ideas.

After Christmas, we’ll be launching our new referral program (we’ll reveal more information about this in the coming months), and we’ll also be working with our newly certified florist on some stylized rental shoots.

Esteem’s first year was a whirlwind, and if year two is anything like it, we know it will be filled with joyful brides, beautiful events, and happy customers. Thank you to everyone who helped make our first year of operating Esteem a success, and thank you to the communities of Smoky Lake and Vegreville for all the support they have shown us.

We really couldn’t have done it without you!

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