Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Confidence with Terrica

Show notes:

Today I’m chatting with Wedding Industry legend – Terrica about overcoming challenges and embracing confidence. Not only does she lead a team of planners within her wedding planning business, Cocktails and Details, she’s also a powerhouse in the wedding industry speaking world. Her approach to education is to keep it real, which is exactly what we are doing in today’s episode.

Find out more about Terrica

Time Stamps:

The journey to becoming a wedding planner (00:01:05) Terrica’s background, education, and passion for the wedding industry, and her experiences at wedding conferences.

Starting out in the wedding industry (00:02:59) Terrica’s decision to become a wedding planner, her first client experience, and the importance of practical experience.

Struggles and lessons learned in the wedding planning journey (00:06:18) The struggles of not investing in the business earlier, the importance of brand presence, and the value of feedback and tough love.

Personal experiences in wedding planning (00:10:39) Highs and lows of wedding planning, including a memorable wedding and dealing with challenging situations.

Challenges faced as an African-American wedding planner (00:14:58) Terrica’s experiences and struggles as an African-American wedding planner in the deep south of the USA.

Embracing confidence and authenticity (00:16:46) Terrica’s transition to being unapologetically herself, the importance of education, and the value of being who she needed when she started.

Advice for building confidence in the wedding industry (00:20:24) Terrica’s tips and advice for professionals struggling with confidence in their wedding businesses.

The comparison syndrome (00:20:30) Discussion on the negative impact of comparing oneself to competitors on social media and the importance of focusing on one’s unique strengths.

Building competence and confidence (00:21:22) Encouragement to identify and focus on one’s unique strengths to build competence and confidence, rather than getting caught up in comparison and imitating others.

Diversifying the industry and promoting inclusion (00:28:14) Terrica’s passion for diversifying the wedding industry and promoting diversity and inclusion, including her involvement in programs and initiatives to support historically underrepresented individuals.

Common pitfalls in wedding planning (00:26:04) Discussion on the common mistake of offering bloated services, leading to lower profits and burnout, and the importance of focusing on maximizing profit with minimal effort.

Unity through community initiative (00:30:47) Terrica’s initiative aimed at making the wedding industry more diverse and inclusive, providing resources and guidance for promoting diversity and inclusion.

Valuing one’s worth in the business (00:34:02) The importance of recognizing one’s worth and charging appropriately for services, leading to financial success and sustainability in the wedding business.

Transcript:

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Terrica: I don’t have competition. The only competition that I have is in the mirror. I am only trying to get better than the person I was yesterday because once I get to that level where I’m like, Oh, I have to beat X, Y, Z in followers and sales and attendees. I’m no longer running my race, right? I’m running somebody else’s race.

Becca: I’m Becca Pountney, wedding business marketing expert, speaker and blogger, and you’re listening to the wedding pros who are ready to grow podcast. I’m here to share with you actionable tips, strategies, and real life examples. To help you take your wedding business to the next level. If you are an ambitious wedding business owner that wants to take your passion and use it to build a profitable, sustainable business doing what you love, then you’re in the right place.

Let’s get going with today’s episode. Today I’m talking to wedding industry legend Terrica. Not only does she lead a team of planners within her wedding planning business, cocktails and details, she’s also a powerhouse in the wedding industry speaking world. Her approach to education is to keep it real.

And having seen her on stage in Vegas, I knew that you would love hearing from her. Terrica, welcome to the podcast.

Terrica: Thank you so much for having me. I’m super excited to be here.

Becca: I’m thrilled to have you. Thank you because I know where you are. It’s very early in the morning that we’re recording this, but thank you for taking the time out to talk to my lovely UK pros.

Terrica: My absolute pleasure

Becca: and it was such a pleasure to finally see you in person when I came to Vegas Vegas was such a buzz for me because all of these people that I’ve talked to online and work with online and spoken to online We’re all in one room at the same time and it was so much fun to see everyone It’s like a big wedding education party and that is why I’m coming back this year

Terrica: Oh, I’m so glad you are you know Vegas Just as a whole, as a city can be very overstimulating and then to go for a wedding conference and then you have all the events during the evenings and then you come back for the education during the day.

It can be a lot. But like you said, it’s the one moment where all of us can converge all together and You know, see each other outside of our DMS and comments and, you know, video. So it’s an absolute amazing time. This will be my seventh year there this year, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I absolutely love it.

Becca: Yeah, and I can see it becoming quite addictive. So I feel like after this year, maybe it’ll just like, I’m just going to be flying to Vegas every single year to see everyone because it’s so much fun. And I’m looking forward to getting on that stage and talking to people this year as well. Take me back to the start.

On this podcast, I always like to hear people’s journeys because I think how can we teach people if they don’t know where we’ve come from? So take me back to the start of your own journey. How did you end up in this wild West world of the wedding industry in the first place?

Terrica: Well, I always like to say I’m the wedding planner who has never had a wedding before.

I actually eloped when I got married, so I was planning our wedding. Over and over again, but it would never happen. We either relocated or something happened. And I just really, really loved the ideas, the vision of certain things. And I was like, you know what? I can definitely, I could do this. And I was actually in the process of studying legal studies at my university.

I was wanting to become a criminal attorney and I had my daughter at the time. And so, you know, every night I was schlepping her and her baby carrier to the low library and reading and writing briefs and all of this other stuff. And then finally I was like, you know, I really want to do something. That makes me happy.

I want to be involved in people’s lives where it’s a great moment that can create an experience that, you know, I always say that moments turn into memories and that’s definitely something that I wanted to be a part of. Fast forward, almost two decades later, no longer married, but I still have the same passion that I have for.

This industry and then that grew into me becoming an educator and a speaker. So I feel like there’s always evolutions to everything, and it definitely, it definitely helped me a lot.

Becca: And do you remember back to landing your first client? How did that happen? Because I think that’s one thing, especially when people are starting out.

I think getting the first one that isn’t just your friend and family member is the hardest thing. Do you remember how you got your first client?

Terrica: Yeah, I do. I was actually not even living in my area at the time when I got my first client. And I traveled back to where I am now because they were coming in for a destination.

As a matter of fact, my first room was from the UK. Now that I remember, yes, yes, he was. I do remember that they were having their wedding at a very large family home over on the island. And it was my first client. It was my first wedding coordination clients. I was like, Oh my God, I have to go get a name tag.

I have to go get a suit to do all these things. I was not prepared at all. All the education that I had was so great in theory, but It actually took the practice of me getting in. So that’s even why now I take that mindset when I train my interns and I’m like, Oh, okay. We can’t wait to start working on the intern program.

I’m like, yeah, that’s cute. But I’m tossing you to the wolves as soon as you get in here, I’m tossing you right in into an event. And I always ask them, well, what would you do here? Or what do you think about this? And I love to see how their eyes get wide, right? But I really feel like that practical experience is going to help you.

Nothing replaces that at all. So I was overjoyed when I got my first client, they reached out to me online. And that’s another reason why I stress so much about a really strong online presence, your SEO. Being able to sell immediately from either a phone conversation or through email because you have such a small window to capture their attention and their booking.

Becca: So, so important. What do you think some of the struggles have been that you faced along the way in your own wedding planning journey that people might be able to resonate with or learn from?

Terrica: You know what, honestly, not investing in my business earlier. You know, trying to go to YouTube University and learn everything there online, trying to, you know, scrape up all the free things that I can, but free can only take you so far.

And if you have that free mindset, that discount coupon. Mindset with your business. That’s exactly what you’re going to attract. And that’s exactly the type of brand experience that you are going to create. So if I had to do it all over again, I would definitely invest in my brand a lot sooner just because I’m good at certain things doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m great at it and that I should take it on.

So I went through several iterations, like every single year in January, I would change my logo. I was like literally going through things. I’m like, you know what? I’m going to wake up and change my logo, change my website. And looking back now, I’m like, Oh girl, you should have been medicated. Something is wrong with you.

You look like you have like multiple personalities here, but I would have invested in a coach earlier. I would have invested in really great education earlier. And I really would have investigated, investigated, invested in a really great brand presence. Earlier because once I found the person who redesigned my brand, it was literally like love at first sight when she created what she created for me.

I was like, no, there’s no revisions. That’s it. You know, finally got it. So sometimes you need to invest in yourself so that you can see outside of your vision. And that’s why I always joke when I speak, I’m like, yeah, you know, I’m here to be your, your best friend in this business, but I’m also here to tell you that your baby’s ugly.

Nobody was telling me that my baby was ugly, right? Nobody was telling me, Oh, you know, your pricing needs to go up or your services aren’t like this, or your, your branding doesn’t look great. So you need someone from the outside looking in to really help you take you to the next level.

Becca: And I love that you’re on board with this whole, keeping it real because I’m exactly the same as you.

And I often say to people, they’ll come to me after a talk on stage, or they’ve been to one of my trainings and they’ll say, well, you give me some feedback on my website or my brand. And I say caveat before. Are you ready to hear it? Because I will tell you straight. And if you don’t want to hear that, then don’t ask me the question.

Terrica: Do not come over here with any of your questions because I am not. I’m not here to sugarcoat. You know what I mean? Sugarcoat is not going, sugarcoating to pad your, your books. It’s not going to pad your bank account. It’s only going to make you feel better. And, you know, I’m here to be a cheerleader, but I am not here to be You know, just a yes man either.

So I totally agree. You got to keep it real.

Becca: Yeah, and it’s important to find those people because if you do want feedback, genuine feedback on your website, on your logo, on your brand, if you ask your friends and family, they will just say, yeah, it looks great. And that’s not actually helpful.

Terrica: Oh, it’s amazing.

You did such a great job. Yeah. It’s not helpful at all. And you know why? They’re not your clients. It’s, and I say that so often when people are like, Oh, you know I couldn’t afford me or I can’t really book. I’m like, nobody asked you if you could book yourself, you’re selling with your own pockets.

Nobody is asking you to do that because you’re not your client. So, you know, you need to talk to people who have their ear on the ground, their finger on the pulse. And they can help you, but ultimately it has to be someone that understands your market. Otherwise, yeah, lots of stuff looks pretty. And I say that to my, my students too.

I’m like, okay, think about it as if we were going shopping. Do you like how an outfit looks on you? Or do you like how it looks on the model? Because those are two totally different things. And that’s the same thing here. Do you, do you think you have a great service or do you have a great service for your market?

And I think that’s that. That kind of tough love that we have to have for and with ourselves within this industry. Yeah.

Becca: And everyone needs a Becca or a Terrica in their life to give them some tough love. It’s hard to hear, but it will make you better. It will, it will push you forward. Terrica, get on keeping it real.

You’ve had a lot of experience planning weddings. I would love to hear some of your personal experiences, maybe both the highs and the lows as you look back on your wedding planning journey.

Terrica: Oh, wow. There’s been quite a few. I still have to say, you know, to this day, one of my most favorite weddings is one that we did about a year ago, not last year, but the year prior had two of the most beautiful brides ever.

And it was the most heartfelt. Ceremony that incorporated their ancestors their family and friends that were there with them Their their love for each other and that honestly, of course, I was so happy with the way that it looked aesthetically I was so pleased with the way that my team produced it but on a personal level I felt so connected for the first time.

And of course it’s probably because I worked with them the longest, but even just viewing their ceremony, I felt so connected and I was thinking, you know what, that’s the type of love I want that that’s just so amazing. So, you know, and everyone was darling at that event, their family, their friends, they were so gracious, they were grateful, they were all having a good time.

So that was actually one of the. weddings where I was like, I could do this forever. This is amazing. Or I was also like, you know what, if this is my last one, I’m happy to go out on this one too, because I have taken significantly fewer weddings now that I’m out educating and speaking. But on the flip side, girl, is, is some out there where I’m like, Oh, Tarica relax.

Cause you do not look good in orange. And you end up in prison. You’re going to leave these people alone. Everything from I’ve been accused of stealing at weddings. I have been talked down to. I’ve dealt with a lot of racist and sexist behavior. I have dealt with mothers that have tried to outshine the bride literally walking down the aisle in full wedding dresses before the bride would walk down or in full funeral garb because they were so upset at the wedding.

You know, it’s we’ve had grooms and brothers getting into fights at the rehearsal. But I have seen some crazy, crazy things, which, you know, people are always going to people. If there is anything that you can ever rely on, it’s for people to be exactly who they are. And that’s another, you know, that ties us back to one of your first questions.

Because I went through so many iterations of my business, I didn’t honestly know who I was. In this industry, I didn’t know who I was. I didn’t know who I wanted to be. I didn’t know who I wanted to be someone too. So if you do not have a really great grasp on who you are, what you’re great at, where you want your brand to fit in, you are going to attract everybody and everybody is not your client.

That’s. That’s key. So really knowing who you are will help you so much in finding the right clients for you.

Becca: And that comes across really strongly in what you’ve just shared, both the highs and the lows. The dream clients, that wedding that you love, they are your ideal clients. We want more of those. And we want less of the other ones who are accusing you of stealing.

Terrica: Oh my gosh. Yes. Yes, yes, yes. And it’s like, oh my gosh, girl, you know what they accused me of stealing? Their cake topper. Oh I’m like, I don’t even like their cake topper was a dog. I’m like, I don’t even like dogs. Everybody knows that knows my brand knows that I have an amazing, very vocal links point Siamese cat who I have no idea where she’s at now.

You probably would see her cause she sees me talking to my computer and she always shows up. She’s like, Oh, you’re doing something. Allow me to sing the song of my people for all of your friends online. So yeah, I’m like, stealing your, your dog cake topper? No, thanks.

Becca: Well, weddings seem to bring out the crazy in people, but I think there is a deeper message.

I think there’s a deeper message in what you’re saying, and I know you’re based, I believe, down in the deep south in the USA, and I have been there many times. My best friend lives in Alabama, and one of the first times I visited, I was truly shocked About the state of that part of America and how much the cities and the places were still quite segregated in a way that here in the UK, we don’t experience.

So do you think for you, where you’re based, there’s been issues that you’ve faced as an African American wedding planner that may be different to some of your peers?

Terrica: Oh, honey, absolutely. Yes. To the point where I’m still the only one. That’s here. You know what I mean? And so it took a lot for me to step into that position.

I started my business, you know, when I was younger. So I’m starting off with not a lot of experience. I’m starting off as a young person, starting off as a black woman in charge of so many. So There were a lot of times where, yeah, I was accused of not being a professional. And when I say a professional, I mean not that I opted poorly, but like this wasn’t my business.

Like I didn’t have a true business they would not pay attention to me at all. And, and that’s again where you really have to know who you are, who you are and you have to be very steadfast in that. And things have changed at that time. I wouldn’t even put my photo on my website. I didn’t have, you know, a headshot because I was like, people aren’t going to hire me when they see me.

So, you know, at that point I was just like, you know what, I’m, I’m done, I’m over it. This is who I am. People are going to like it or love it. They’ll move on and that’s, it’s been a great walk ever since, but you’re absolutely right. There is, there’s still so much work that needs to be done for sure.

Becca: Yeah, it is an ever changing world, but we need, we all need to, we all need to do more of that work for sure. And I’m so glad that you stepped into who you are, Terika, because Who you are, as I said, in the introduction, I introduced you as an industry legend, because even I look at you and I just think, wow, you have really nailed being unapologetically yourself.

It’s something that I teach. I tell people to do it. And what I love about your brand, your website, everything just oozes confidence and who you are. So how have you made that transition? How have you. stepped up and gone, I am Terrica and I am awesome.

Terrica: You know, I, I think that it, it takes a lot of growth.

It takes a lot of growth of understanding you know, who you are and who, who you’re not and who, you know, how you want to be treated. And I know you wanted to be appreciated for there’s like, you know, we pick so many different aspects of our personality and we push them together. We may let one be at the forefront a little bit more than the others.

But honestly, Rebecca, I just wanted to be who I needed when I got started. You know, back in the day when I got started, I would ask for help because again, remember I’m coming from both a medical and a legal background. I have no idea about this. Yeah. I like to entertain and plan and, and, you know, do parties with my friends, but I had no idea how to do it as a business.

So at that point, I’m like, you know what? This is what I want. This is who I am. This is exactly what I’m going to do. And I was so fierce about it. I would ask for help and people like, no, I’m not going to help you. I’m not going to train my competition. I’m not going to do this. So that’s why education has been always so Important to me that people have access to great things at all levels of their desire and investment.

And I hate gatekeeping. There’s zero. I have zero desire to work every weekend. Okay, so you can have as many of the weddings as you want me telling you how I do things or me showing you things or answering questions does not take away from me at all because what’s mine is mine and what’s yours is yours.

So I never truly. understood a lot of the, the clickishness and the animosity that I dealt with prior to that. So I said, you know what, I’m definitely going to be somebody different. And I also wanted to be someone different as an educator and a speaker. I just didn’t get up on stage and say, Oh, look at me.

Look at these great events I’ve done. I’m so amazing. I’m only going to give you one glimpse of a nugget. I’m not even going to give you a nugget. I’m going to give you a glimpse of a nugget and everything else is just going to be a me fast. No, you know, you want somebody that’s going to be like, Hey, you’re doing it wrong.

Here’s a great way that you can do it. Here’s where I got it wrong and I don’t want you to do it either. Or you know what? You are absolutely perfect the way that you are. Stop letting people walk over. You stop undercharging. You’ve got this. And I think that’s, that’s become definitely part of my brand.

I always say when I get up on stage, this is going to be a conversation. I absolutely love talking to my audience. I love them talking back to me. So it, and the time just seems to fly. I’m like, oh, wow, it’s time for us to get out of here already. But it means the world to me when people say Oh, you’re my favorite speaker, or I learned so much from you, or you changed my business because that’s how I know I’ve done my job, right?

Not how many likes I get, know how many followers I have. It’s that I’m being who I needed when I got started.

Becca: And I believe that’s what makes It’s a truly great educator when it’s not about yourself and it’s not even about making money from these people at all. Like that’s the bottom priority of the list.

Obviously we have to make money otherwise we wouldn’t be living. But actually our number one passion that drives us forward is seeing that growth, seeing that change and seeing people’s lives changed from something simple that we’ve shown them how to do. Absolutely. Absolutely. Now, you’ve worked with a lot of pros, and I’ve worked with a lot of pros, and I think confidence is a huge issue for a lot of them.

And there’ll be people listening to this and thinking, well, that’s great for you, Terica, you’re really confident, and that’s great for you, Becca, you’re really confident, you’re both up on stages and talking to people, but me and my business on my own, I don’t feel good enough. I don’t feel confident. Do you have any advice, any tips for people who are in that space?

Terrica: Of course, you know, when, when we first grow into this, it is not necessarily that you come with all of the answers, right? You, you don’t have it. You are just. Like, you know what, I’m not sure if I’m going to do this because you know what, we also get into the comparison syndrome, right? We get into the part where we, especially on social media, when I got started, Instagram and Facebook weren’t really a thing.

And then now you have, you’re on TikTok, you are just inundated with images, videos, and all of these things of what your quote unquote competitors are doing. Are they doing it better than you? Are they getting more followers than you? And we start to separate from. Who we are and who we think we’re supposed to be for everyone else and then it just becomes A comparison olympics, right?

But I always like to say that competence breeds confidence. So just pick one thing that you are amazing at. What’s your gift? What’s that one thing that you are phenomenal at? And it doesn’t necessarily have to be a lot of produced pretty events. Break it down. You know, are you great at customer service?

Are you great at client experience? Are you wonderful with logistics? Do you do great things with catering? B. O. S. Are you phenomenal with florals? Just pick that one thing that you’re great at. And focus there, build your brand around that, and you’ll become more competent. The more competent you become, the more confident you become, because nobody can tell you that you’re not good at it.

You know that you’re good at it, so as opposed to looking at it as a whole, just look at it piece by piece and just stare at the mirror. I had, and that’s another thing too, I don’t always get the rosy comments, right? I had someone who got very upset with me in my Instagram comments, because I said I don’t have competition.

The only competition that I have is in the mirror. I am only trying to get better than the person I was yesterday because once I get to that level where I’m like, Oh, I have to beat X, Y, Z, you know, in followers and in sales and attendees. I’m no longer running my race, right? I’m running somebody else’s race and I don’t know what type of supplements they have.

I don’t know what type of workout they’re doing that helps them run better. I only know what helps me run best. So I always try and I say try because sometimes it’s hard not to compare yourself. Sometimes it’s hard not to pay attention and you do have to pay attention to some things just so you can understand what your market wants.

But I always try to make sure. That I am laser focused on what I have to do and what I’m great at. And as long as I am true to myself. And I’m authentic, and I’m genuine, and empathetic, and I’m compassionate, then I know I’m knocking it out of the park.

Becca: Yes, yes, and more yes. How could anyone be angry at you for that comment?

Because I agree with you wholeheartedly, let’s stop looking left and right, stay in your own lane, you’re your own person, do your own thing, and compare yourself only to who you were last year, and keep taking one step forward. There is no point comparing ourselves to each other. And what happens in our industry is if we look left and right all the time, and try and be like everyone else, We end up all being the same and vanilla and I say in one of my stage talks, do you know how many varieties of ice cream there are in this world?

Like we don’t all need to be vanilla. Some people want chocolate chips. Some people want mint chocolate chips. Some people want unicorn candy floss flavor ice cream. They’re all good, but they’re all different.

Terrica: You know, I love that you say that because yours is ice cream minus bread. So I’ll have so many students that say, Oh, I can’t do this, or I can’t branch out, or I can’t offer this service because somebody is already offering it.

And I always say, there is a difference between first, only, and best. When you’re the first one to do it, then you’re new on the scene, right? You are making such an impact So everyone is enamored with you, but you have to keep that up. You have to keep that consistency up When you’re the only one that does it there’s nobody else to compare you to so we don’t know technically If you’re good, you have to rely on yourself to keep getting better.

But when you’re the best It means that taking in totality of everything that’s around you, what’s going on, what’s being offered, what’s being said, what’s being done, you are still coming out on top. So don’t get stuck in this mindset of, Oh, it’s so many other people that’s out there. Look at the bread aisle.

If we walk down the bread aisle, there is gluten free bread. There’s wheat bread. There’s white bread, hot dog rolls, hamburger rolls, biscuits, scones. There’s so many different things because there’s something to appeal to everyone. Again, you don’t want to appeal to everyone. You’re going to be like, you know what?

I’m going to make the best biscuit. Oh wait, biscuits are cookies for you guys. Okay. So maybe you’re scones. All right. See, I’m sorry. I try to get my UK language together and, but you get my point, right? You, you want to make the best type of bread that you are going to make. So stop worrying about if somebody else is out there doing it.

The person who’s going to fall in love with your recipe, with your branding, with your style, with your service is definitely out there.

Becca: Yeah, 100%. Terrica,, you work with lots of different planners. You’ve seen lots of different problems, I’m sure. Are there some common pitfalls that you see planners making?

All of the time that you want to say, stop doing that and do this instead.

Terrica: Yes, yes, yes, yes. They give so much away. Like when I work with my students and I’m looking at their packages and I’m like, why are we doing all of this? And you’re like, Oh, I wanted to add more value. I’m like, no, when I total all this up, you’re making like 3 an hour.

This makes no sense. So find out what is the minimum you can do for the maximum profit. Everything else thought about we can add on as an upsell we can add on as a customization I feel like we we try to bullet point dump our clients By showing them so many different things that we can do and I want to make it look good, but we’re really lowering our profit that’s down.

And, you know, if you ever want to make more, you just have to do less. So that would be the first thing that I would do. And a lot of times that’s how people get started. They’re like, Oh, let me. Let me, what do you call it? Let me secret shop one of my competitors and see what they offer and then I’ll pick that out and then every, like you said, everybody starts looking the same as opposed to really understanding what your market wants and creating something specific for them.

So that would be the 1 thing I say planners really, really make is that they, they make these bloated services and then wonder why they’re not making enough money.

Becca: And why they’re completely exhausted from doing all of the things. Like completely burned out.

Terrica: Yes. Yes.

Becca: And often I think that same thing comes back almost full circle to the confidence because I think often people put all these things in their packages because they feel like they’ve got something to prove.

They’ve got to prove their worth by putting all of the things, but that’s just not right.

Terrica: You absolutely nailed it. You nailed it right there. Yeah,

Becca: we don’t need to prove anything. You could be who you want to be. You can sell what you want to sell. Just go out there and be yourself. Now, Terica, you’re a prominent Yes, there’s somebody for you.

There absolutely is. There’s somebody for everyone, as they say. Now, Terica, right now, you’re quite a prominent voice in the wedding industry. You’re speaking all over the place. You’re out there on the Instagram, on the podcast. How are you using your voice right now? What change are you wanting to see in this industry?

Terrica: You know And the states back in 2020, when we were dealing with the pandemic, we were also dealing with then an epidemic of racism within our industry as well. And that brought forth so many inequities and discriminations that existed in our industry here. So I have been very, very passionate about diversifying our industry and really promoting diversity and inclusion in our industry as well.

So. Amongst some of the other things that I do, I also sit on the advisory board for fellowship for change, which is a program created from wedding pro, which is the combination of the knot and wedding wire. And it’s a program that serves. Historically underrepresented people within our industry. So everyone from, you know, people in the LGBTQ plus communities to people of color, to people with, you know, who are otherly abled as well.

And so I I’m an advisor in that program. I’m an educator in that program, a mentor in that program, and that has. That’s probably hands down one of the things that I’m so passionate about and that I am so happy to see it grow and it consistently. Give back and pour into some of our people that need it the most.

So again, I guess again, it goes back to being who I needed when I got started. A lot of the times people don’t have the money to invest in advertising. They don’t have the money or the time or the resources or the capabilities to invest in education and coaching and community. They may live in a. A networking drought where they don’t have anybody that’s nearby.

So that program has created and changed. So many businesses, and I’m just so very proud of it and so very proud to be a part of it.

Becca: Sounds fantastic. It’s not something I’ve come across. I don’t know whether people in the UK can get access to it. I don’t know whether you know if the people in the UK could get access to it.

Terrica: I’m not sure, to be honest with you. I’ll have to look that up.

Becca: Yeah, for sure. And as part of that, is there education? Because I know something that comes up. definitely here in the UK with my pros. People say, yeah, I want to be better. I want to be more diverse in my business. I want to be more inclusive in my business, but I just don’t really know where to start, especially if I’m a white person who’s come from a place of privilege.

I don’t really understand it, but I want to do better. Have you got some pointers, some training somewhere people could go to understand what they can be doing?

Terrica: Yes, absolutely. So I spearheaded the initiative called unity through community, which it’s. Our sole goal is to make the wedding industry more diverse and inclusive.

So you can sign up for it. I believe it’s at terricainc. com slash unity through community. And it has so many different resources there. It has checklists of things that you can do for your own business to ensure that you come across as either an ally and advocate or an activist, because those are three different things that we need in our business to.

Promote that diversity and inclusion. It has templates for letters. You can write to different education educators, magazine editors, conference producers, because we want to hold people’s feet to the fire. That’s the only way that change is going to come. I can’t just be like, Oh, we’ve got a lot of work to do, you know, or I wish things were different.

We make it different. And I think the one thing that people did not get until I, I know I didn’t get it until I received an email was that it doesn’t just affect our pros, it affects our clients as well. When I did a town hall on this back in 2020, I got an email from a bride I have never met before. She was in California and she was listing to me all of the things that she had been dealing with and trying to work with someone that looked like her.

And could really help her and she was, she was a bride of color. She had a white wedding planner and she’s like, well, I wear my hair naturally. I need to, you know, have someone do my hair. And the wedding planner was like, Oh, you could just do it yourself. I don’t know anybody who could do your hair or when she needed makeup.

She’s like, no, I don’t know anybody who would specialize in your skin tone. Maybe you can just go to the makeup counter. This is this woman’s most important day of her life. And your literal job is to know. Where to send her. You are supposed to know what resources she has. So when I learned that, you know, it’s not just our pros that are going through certain things to get attention to get seats at the table.

It’s also our clients that are experiencing these things as well. So we have to do better so that we can do better for our clients. So I have a lot of resources that talk about expanding your network, getting to know people, not tokenizing people, but celebrating people and understanding, you know As many things, no matter what color you are, when to speak and when to shut up, when it’s somebody else’s time to talk and share their experience as well.

So if you are interested in, you know, making your. own professional community, more diverse and inclusive. That’s a great starting point for sure.

Becca: Sounds like a fantastic resource. I will definitely be linking to it in the show notes. And if you’re listening to this, please go and check it out because I know this question comes up a lot and I know Terica will have some great answers for you and some great resources.

So go and have a look at that. I will link to it in the show notes. Terica, I could talk to you all day. It’s been such a pleasure chatting to you, but I know that we both have busy lives. We have places to be. So. Let’s end the podcast with the same question I always end with, which is this. What’s one thing you wish you personally had known sooner in your own wedding business?

Terrica: That I am worth every penny that I charge. You know, that I don’t have to discount, that I don’t have to give it all away. That there are people out there that will pay the premium that it takes to work with me because I’m providing a premium experience. So I think if I had gotten that into my head a long time ago, yeah, I would have had a lot more financial success sooner.

Becca: Absolutely. And there’ll be people out there listening to this that absolutely need to hear that. Charge for everything you do. Stop giving it all away for free. That’s not going to put a roof over your head. It’s not going to give you food on the table. Start charging more for the things that you’re doing.

Terica, it’s been such a pleasure chatting to you. If people want to find out more about what you do, working with you, where’s the best place for them to find you?

Terrica: You know, honestly, I’m the most active on Instagram. So you can find me on Instagram at introducing Terrica. And within the link in my bio, it has access to all of my products, my coaching programs, my VIP days, really great content, things that I’m participating in, and even my speaking schedule.

So that would be the best place to, to find me. And, and yeah, please send me a DM. Tell me what you thought about the episode. Let’s chat. I would love to hear and meet. more of you.

Becca: Fabulous. Terrica, thank you so much for your time. I look forward to seeing you in Las Vegas in November in person once more.

Terrica: You absolutely will. I’ll see you soon and hopefully we’ll, we’ll see some of your listeners too. That would be amazing.

Becca: Yeah, absolutely. I am definitely advocating for more people from the UK to come over to Wedding MBA this year. So if you’re listening to this and you want to come to Vegas and hang out with me and Terika and all the other great people, reach out to me.

I’ll send you more details because I think the UK, it’s time for us to come and take America by storm. Terika, I’ll see you there. Thank you for your time. Do it.

Terrica: Thank you so much.

Becca: I love that conversation with Terrica. Isn’t she awesome? I knew that you would love her. I am so on her wavelength with the keeping it real stuff.

And I know that some of you will have heard stuff in today’s episode that’s going to make you want to go and take action. Do two things for me. Go and take a look at Terica’s website, because if you want to see how to put personality at the forefront of your business, that is a shining example. So go take a look at that.

Reach out to her. Tell her what you loved about today’s episode. If you take nothing away from this episode other than this, it’s just be unapologetically yourself. I’ll see you next time.

Becca xo

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