ES: Getting back to trends and inventory management...how do you decide whether or not or what to bring in to your rental inventory?
Cecile: I guess my 18 year old is a gauge.
ES: Yeah, what she thinks would be cool?
Cecile: Yeah, she will say something like “don’t do that.” Or I will be like “what do you think of this?” I get it the, “its so cool.” If I can impress them, people would want to have parties and fun it will be different as if it was a baller wedding, something like that. I think they will like it. I look at the younger generation and see what could potentially be hip and cool for all the clientele.
ES: What popular things would you like just see go away?
Cecile: You are going to hate me for this, I've said it before.
ES: Ha, I'll just edit it right out.
Cecile: Haha. I dislike chiavari chairs.
ES: Chiavari chairs, that's alright, we're bringing in new stuff all the time...
Cecile: The crossback chairs are awesome. I like that. I like that look a lot, but…
ES: You've had it with chiavari chairs?
Cecile: I'm just ready for something new. To me like bring me acrylic, cool that’s nice, that is awesome, clear chairs. I even think just flat bar stools with no back are cool, I like that. You can get two of those around the table, it is different.
ES: Like when you asked me for bar stools and all I really had were chiavari bar stools, right.
Cecile: And you don’t want to know where I got my bar stools from. You've seen them right?
ES: They are alright.
Cecile: They are not stackable though so they do take a lot of space. Space is priceless.
ES: There is a tip: space.
Cecile: Optimizing space.
"I tell them the story about our client. Every client is a story and everybody likes a story."
ES: Here's a good one - the rental business is tough. How do you keep your team positive?
Cecile: I tell them the story about our client. Every client is a story and everybody likes a story. It is not "on Saturday we have to sell 20 beach chairs, 10 umbrellas." It's "This Saturday it is Angie’s bachelorette party on the beach. And she is bringing her sister who she doesn’t really like. But all her friends are so cool from New York and they are going to have all these accents..." It is the story and it's all really cool and they are saddled up. Whatever it is cool, I tell them about the story.
ES: So they feel personally attached.
Cecile: Yeah, you know who's showing up on the beach. That is one way, and then I share with them feedback from clients if they send me a cool email. I will share with them like “hey you guys, you guys did a great job look at the reply”
ES: What do some of your clients do that drive you nuts?
Cecile: I think everybody knows the whole Bridezilla story. I really don’t see a lot of that. I think people are pretty good for the most part. But the thing that is really tough about weddings is when the mother plans it. And you don’t have communication with the bride or the groom because mom is planning it. And the day of the event, the bride and the groom is like “hey where are my red sashes? Where is my amplified sound?” You are going, your mother didn’t order it. And now it sucks because your real client is upset and you have ruined their day but it is not your fault. Who do they look at? That scenario, the non-communicative mother or whoever plans for a big party or something, that’s scary.
ES: That’s tough
Cecile: Yeah, and it happens, it happens more than the Bridezilla thing. Unless you are working directly with who the party is, you are probably going to do something wrong.