It seems that we live in a world of instant gratification. I want to go somewhere now — order a Lyft. I want dinner without having to go anywhere — order from GrubHub. I want that awesome new tech gadget today — thank you, Amazon Prime.

Has this spilled over into our work lives? Does your boss expect everything from you in an instant? Instant gratification is everywhere, but sometimes it’s worth taking our time to get the results we really want. This is especially true when working with vendors in the events industry.

Sometimes events pop up, and a super-quick quote is needed. But usually, we have some advanced notice, so spending some extra time when writing a quote benefits both parties. Do your potential AV partners take the time to ask you questions? It’s impossible to provide a custom solution that will achieve the goals of your event if you and your vendor don’t have real communication. As helpful as RFPs can be, they never give all the necessary information.

Partnerships, Not Products

We had the opportunity to review three different AV quotes for a meeting planner recently. He started out by saying “X production company’s quote was super low, which makes me nervous.” Without having seen the quote yet, we told him “Remember, smaller companies are able to provide lower pricing because they don’t have as much overhead.” It turned out that one of the other quotes was twice as high as the others (!), and the third was somewhere in the middle. The difference between the low-end and high-end quotes, ultimately, was that the lower bid took the time to ask questions to better understand the goals of the event.

Ultimately, X production company wasn’t just trying to fill an order, but create a solution for their client. That’s why it’s valuable to take the time to have a conversation about what’s most important to the audience and the event staff, in addition to what will work best in the venue. Every AV company owns equipment — it’s the relationship you have that makes the difference, and that starts with great communication.

Would you like to be provided products, or would you prefer solutions in a partnership that’s mutually beneficial? The ultimate goal is a successful event, so remember that quicker is not always better.