Tuesday, September 10, 2013

RSVP... PLEASE!

Four little letters that mean so much: RSVP. "Respondez s'il vous plait" in English means "Please Reply". These four letters mean the difference between a successfully planned event, and possible disaster. However, with ever increasing demands for the average persons attention, the actual responses received for event attendance are becoming increasingly less. Let's look at what happens when someone ignores these four little letters.
Think of all the work that goes into planning an event: Renting a venue, setting up tables and chairs, ordering/preparing food and beverages, and these are just some of the basics! While planning and preparing for an event, an accurate head count of guests enables the host to gauge the correct amount of time and space for an event. How big the venue must be, how many tables and chairs, how many place settings (that typically have to be rented or purchased), the amount of food and beverages that will be needed, and the list goes on and on depending on what type of event is being planned.

Failing to properly RSVP within a timely manner means the host has to assume either you are coming (this is typically what happens if the RSVP states "Regrets Only" and you failed to deliver your regret) and proceeds to order the things needed to account for your presence, or assume you are not coming thereby eliminating your spot at the event. It is NOT okay to show up to an event that you failed to RSVP to and expect to be included.

Understandably, things do happen that cause us to forget, and it happens. BUT, this should be a rare exception and not a habit! Here are some suggestions that will help ensure to get your RSVP in on time:
  • When you receive an invitation in the mail that includes an RSVP card, fill it out as soon as you open it and put it in a spot for outgoing mail that will be sent out the following day. It will only take you a minute or two to fill it out, and by doing it immediately you ensure it gets done. Consequently, you won't have to worry about it later. 
  • Make sure you pay attention to the "Respond By" date. Be mindful to get your response in on time, and your host will be very appreciative. 
  • Put the event invitation in a place that you will see on a daily basis (i.e. on the refrigerator door, on your vanity mirror, on your home office cork board, etc.). Out of sight = out of mind. Keeping the invite visible will help you remember to get your RSVP in on time. 
  • If you have a last minute change of plans, be sure to contact the host ahead of time. Even if this means that they have already paid for your attendance, they will appreciate you letting them know, rather than not showing up at all. 
  • If you are hosting an event, be sure to include an email for guests to RSVP to. People are much more likely to send an email response then find time in their busy schedules to make a phone call. 
Forgetting to RSVP to an event is something that happens to all of us. Making sure it doesn't happen every time you receive an invite is something that should be a priority in your social life. Hosting an event has enough stresses on it's own... Please make sure your RSVP isn't one of them the next time you are invited to a special occasion!

Do you always RSVP to an event?