Behind the Scenes with Dish & Decor Vintage Rental
American Rental Association (ARA) Conference 2023
So many good take-aways from the conference that we thought we would share a few with you. Isn't it always a good thing to invest in yourself? A getaway to Florida to learn what's new in the rental market was invigorating and energizing.
Kristina, Dish & Decor Vintage Rental's full-time assistant, had some key take-a-ways from the trip.
"Besides the fabulous connections Janet and I made with others in the rental biz, I also took my first plane ride to my first business trip! (Truthfully, I thought the plane sounded like a big MRI machine. Just saying.) The presenters gave me a wealth of information to absorb as I continue to learn all aspects of the dish and decor rental business. I learned it is not always about the numbers, but even more importantly the ability to communicate a memorable and relatable story with our clients. I also learned that while conveying my passion for what I do, I should strive to know my client and their needs in the marketplace. I learned that we are the "fairy godmothers" setting the bar high for unique table styling. We are responsible to stay ahead of the curve, stay on trend, and deliver the best experience possible."
"On a humorous note, as we walked the trade show floor, we stopped by one of our vendor's booths, they were demonstrating glass caddies. As the sales rep was demonstrating the caddies, Janet, flexing her caddy knowledge, took over the booth! She had it down and covered all the points! The sales reps just stood back and let her go! I am pretty sure the reps learned a thing or two. I watched as my boss shared all the products we use, and how we pack them into their caddy boxes. Sometimes speaking rental owner to rental owner can mean so much more, than just hearing details from a salesperson. We are pretty sure our rental colleagues liked what Janet had to say and bought the glass caddies. 😉 Janet exudes her passion when it comes to what we do. I chuckled watching her in action."
Janet, owner and creator of Dish & Decor Vintage Rental also had some key take-aways from The American Rental Association Conference (ARA).
"I had attended this conference years ago and found it very advantageous. I felt it was time to attend again this year. I am proud to be in a position to now have a full-time assistant, and I was able to bring her along. Until I hired her, I was basically doing all aspects of my rental business myself with a few part-time employees. Now that my business has grown, I know I can no longer do this alone. I will continue to mentor her in all aspects of what I do with the goal that she can manage it all for me. Now that I have been in this biz for six years, the conference reinforced many of the values and goals that I hold dear. It's the people, the team, and their strengths that matter. Strategically using our employees' strengths to put them in the right positions, keeps everyone happy and it is working great for my team. Kristina and I connected at just the right exact moment."
"One of the main highlights of the conference for me was Daymon John from Shark Tank, our keynote speaker. He definitely confirmed my beliefs. His message was...You are the business. You are already doing it. You are here for a reason. You have what it takes to succeed. You have the gift, the instinct, the drive and the passion. Daymon's words say it all."
"Another inspiring speaker was Steve Kemble. This lifestyle guru from Texas was something else! His passion and energy were off the charts. I love his sense of styling tablescapes which affirms my own design choices and what I have collected. The more textures and patterns the better. Mix it up! Layers and layers of texture. Steve says, 'We live in a mismatched world!' This speaks to my heart. And according to Steve, don't forget to use a charger because it adds elegance."
"Besides speakers, the networking at each session was amazing. I had to laugh at one of the exchanges I had in one of the sessions I attended. I was chatting with an interior decorator from Indianapolis. She wanted to know what I do. After explaining the tablescape pieces I rent, she said, 'You must have a good dishwasher!'
I said, 'Yes, sometimes 8-9.' She didn't realize we handwash most all of our pieces due to them being vintage and to being carefully inspected. I really shocked her when I said that last year, we handwashed 35,000 pieces. Her mouth dropped!
Later, when I interjected myself into a trade show booth to explain how to use their glass caddies, I overheard her to tell her entourage, 'That's the lady I was telling you about that handwashed 35,000 pieces!'
And this is a perfect example of how I love the networking aspect of business. Our vendors and connections become friends. She and I realized that she has things I don't have and vice versa. Our businesses can assist each other. And she will most likely remember my story."
As we learned the current trends and what is coming in, and what is on the way out, Kristina and I came home with a long list of what we want to accomplish next. We are refreshed and ready for some big business decisions. Stay tuned!
Dish & Décor Vintage Rental- 1320 Chase St, Suite 8, Algonquin IL 60102