Meet the Planners :: Kay Wooten

Friday, February 20, 2009

washington dc wedding planner

Name: Kawania (Kay) Wooten

Location: Washington, DC

Company Name: Howerton+Wooten Events

Number of Years in Business: 2

Website: hwevents.com

Blog: hwevents.typepad.com

How did you get started in wedding planning? 
One night during my first year of grad school, I was sitting on my bed thinking, “What am I doing? I hate this.” Then I picked up a magazine and read an article about conference and event planners. And, like that, I left what was comfortable to me, and made a major change in my world. For the next 15 years, I managed conventions and high-end events for Washington DC non-profits and foundations. For years, I wanted to start my own business, but I was too chicken – I was afraid of failing. Then a couple of years ago, I decided to take the leap. The idea of starting my own business still scared the crap out of me (I don’t think I was born with an entrepreneurial spirit), but I hated the fact that I allowed fear to stop me. So, I took the leap and started Howerton+Wooten Events. I haven’t looked back.

If you had to start over what one thing would you do differently?
I would have stayed true to me.  I started out trying to be true to the almighty dollar – six months later, I didn’t recognize myself or my company. I spent some time this summer re-writing my business plan to get my company back on track.

What's your favorite item in your emergency kit?
Well, I use double-sided tape more than anything in my kit, but I was considered a rock star at one wedding because I had a can of Fix-A-Flat in my trunk.

What is the best piece of business advice you've ever received? 
Don’t try to be all things to all people. Figure out what you do best; determine your target market; and spend time developing that.

What two people (past or present) would you have as guests at a dinner party and why?
Condoleezza Rice – She’s an incredible lady and I have a great deal of admiration for her and her accomplishments, but she’s got some explaining to do.
Jesus Christ – I’ve got some explaining to do, too.

What are your three favorite blogs besides thesmartplanner.com?
The Bride’s Café. Her posts are fun eye candy.
Seth Godin’s Blog. A must read for entrepreneur newbies like me.
Weddex Blog. Another great blog that focuses on the business of weddings.

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