Nigerian Wedding is proud to announce our first Nigerian Wedding Vendor Interview Series. Every month we will be showcasing top local Nigerian wedding vendors, in different states around the country who have greatly impacted the wedding industry with their amazing work. To kick off our second interview for this month of March, we connected with the young, vibrant and hardworking Port Harcourt based Wedding Planner and event coordinator Asitonka Aggrey-Abah of 3003 Events Planning!
Read as Asitonka Aggrey-Abah gets JobShadowed about her career as a wedding planner.
Read all below, be inspired! Photos by Fortespy Productions.
1. How did you get involve with wedding & planning event?
I’ve always had a flair for organization of any sort,whether it is the way I write in my school notes or how I lead a team of fellow engineering students to another state for a conference! Either way, best believe I have it all planned out.
Events planning started for me when I was still in the university(Uniport to be precise). I had a rough book on wedding planning, I saved different pictures from weddings on my laptop to draw inspirations with which I advised any of my friends getting married. Being a Petroleum Engineering student in school, I never saw event planning as something I’d like to do in the future still I somehow found a little time to check wedding pictures on the internet.
I even opened an album on my Facebook page for wedding planning back in 2012(P.S: I only remembered that I did this after I had already launched my company).
So as much as I’d have loved to say event planning was new to me(just so I can be excused if I made any mistakes..lol) ; it isn’t a totally fresh career since I had subconsciously nurtured it. After my graduation from the university;I learnt a lot of skills in the process of burning time before service, from sewing to makeup to photography and crafts.
I still didn’t know what I wanted to do even when I started my NYSC. However August 2014, I attended our annual Society of Petroleum Engineers conference, in the midst of my fellow oil and gas intellectuals I was driven again and I started preparing to write publishable papers and do read up all technological advancements.
Unfortunately when I returned, I found out that my laptop had crashed with 5 years worth of all my research, books and memory. Alas that was a sign!! I started thinking of what I could do aside petroleum engineering, seeing that all my work had been wiped away. One lucky day, I heard someone say “FIND WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR FREE, PACKAGE IT PROPERLY AND DO IT FOR MONEY” That’s when I first thought of event planning as a career. I decided to draw from my knowledge of various skills and finally launched 3003Events on March 30th, 2015 to the glory of God.
What do you feel are the most important elements to designing a party or wedding?
When designing a wedding, the important elements I consider are the venue, guest size, date and budget. On the basis of these elements, I can properly design and advice on what’s best for the event.
What are your favourite trend this year?
I have some trends I like but I’d say I totally love unique trends (something different from the normal). Whether it’s the bride wearing sneakers for her wedding or the groom having a best lady instead of a Bestman. Also themed events. I love creativity so those are definitely the trends I love.
What do you find the most difficult part about planning events?
I’d say the budget part. It’s a very sensitive part of the planning. As we all know, money and money related matters are serious, therefore proper budget sensitization is required as to guide the clients. Sometimes clients might underestimate the amount of money that is involved in planning the event of their choice. So I usually take out time to do budget analysis and allocation for entire event; this way they are aware of how the money would be spent and they are carried along in the process.
Another difficulty that can arise would be when the funds are not readily available or if approval for payment is delayed for a long period of time. This affects our time schedules, checklists and it ultimately slows down the planning process.
What are the most challenging episodes you have gone through?
There was an event, I had my top assistants handle because we had another event on that the same day. Unfortunately, one of the vendors under-delivered and that sort of had a “domino effect” on the rest of our work and it really got to us. It was tough being the first time we were having such issues but the team pulled through till the end and I’m grateful to them for that. I also apologized to clients for the inconveniences. That was my most challenging episode.
What advice do you have for event planners just starting their business?
Pray, pray and pray. Don’t be money driven, focus on efficient delivery. Never ever compromise on integrity, quality and excellence.
Do you have any events or projects coming up ?
Yes, We have some exciting projects lined up for this year. They are going to be revealed in due time.
Whats your vision for your brand?
To be a globally recognized brand in the world of event planning and management.
How do you work with social media / what impact has social media played in your brand?
Social media has helped us so much as we can easily access informations, it has also provided a platform us to showcase our brand to the public.
As much as we can, we upload pictures from our events on our Facebook or Instagram page, giving our followers information on whatever it is we are up to. With the impact of social media in recent times, It’s safe to say right now that a social network like Instagram has become a MUST HAVE for every business owner that wishes to reach to more people as it gives prospective clients a preview as to what your brand offers.
What would you like everyone to take away from this?
Having a passion sometimes is not enough. You’d need a driving force, a PUSH! Ask yourself how badly do you want it? Life is too short to spend it being little. Dream BIG and put in as much work. In all things, always remember to give God the glory.
If you enjoyed learning about 3003 Events Planning and would like to learn more about other local vendors we will be showcasing a new vendor every month as part of our new Interview Series. Stay tuned!