That Was a BIG Mistake...

I got incorporated, rented my gear, I practiced behind the camera and educated myself as much as I could, but nothing prepared me for this...

It was my first week as an incorporated company, and I had named the company "Forza Films and Photography". It was a perfect name, inspired by the women in my life and the men and women who serve in the military, since "Forza" is the word meaning "strength" in Italian. After I got incorporated, I reached out to a wedding planner and I was in luck! They had a wedding in a week and a half that was interested in having a videographer!

Yes, I thought my first graphic sketch was PRETTY clever.

After the bride told the planners that she was interested, Catherine and I met up with her at a downtown coffee shop. Things started off GREAT! We were chatting and getting to know each other, enjoying each others' company until the bride told me that she "Really loves my wedding films!" She continued saying, "The shot with the gown in the tree is so beautiful!" Catherine and I sat there, and I had to do my best to explain that, she confused our company with a Canadian company named "Forza Films". I had to tell her that not only was that not my wedding video, but that she was our first official wedding... (we thought she already knew this).

I'M SORRY...WHAT?

I did my best to gain her trust, being honest, showing past event work, explaining my past video jobs and portfolios, but she was still SUPER apprehensive. I had left my FIRST EVER client meeting, with my client feeling nervous, unfulfilled, cheated, EVERY BAD ADJECTIVE YOU CAN THINK OF! I think she left saying something like, "Well, there's not much I can do now I guess, is there?"

Who was I kidding starting a business?! After that meeting, I was supposed to go study for my finals, but instead I went home to bawl my eyes out, and regret ever starting a company. Luckily, my Aunt Kathleen stopped by looking for my Mom, who wasn't home. She and Catherine consoled me as best as they could, naming the things I did right, telling me that it'd get better, and saying that "God lead me to it, and will lead me through it."

The bride booked us, and it was probably the most nerve wracking wedding EVER, but we did it, and we proved to her that we could make her happy.

In order to move forward, we have to face our faults. We have to review our mistakes and we have to improve. However, the other important part of balancing this equation is making sure that we are reminded of the value we add and things we do well.

Time for some SELF-REFLECTION amirite?! ;)

A rule at our year-end meeting was that no one was allowed to name something they needed to improve, until they shared what they were proud of. Everyone needed to list specific examples of times they felt good about themselves. After that, the other two people could chime in and mention strengths that they noticed in this person. While there are things we each hope to improve, we should be very proud of what we were able to achieve, individually and as a team. I'm going to focus on those moments.

Evan named this part of the wedding day as one that he was especially proud of.

"During Brittany and Keith's wedding day, I requested Keith's Aunt Beth to assist Keith with his boutonnière. Keith had lost his mother when he was young, and his Aunt Beth was a huge mother-figure in his life. Even though Aunt Beth was with the girls getting ready, I thought it was important for her to see him, so that they could a moment before Keith and Brittany's ceremony."

Catherine named this shoot as one that she was especially proud of.

"Chance's session was a big confidence booster for me. One thing I love about photographing with Samantha is the energy we bounce off of each other. Whether she's making a joke about me to turn a fake laugh into a real laugh or she notices the look on my face when I'm excited and lets me take the lead in posing for a moment, we work so well together. During Chance's session, I was alone and I was really worried I would forget everything! Samantha leads sessions and sometimes I think I become dependent on her as a crutch. During this session I proved to myself that I know how to pose and I can think on the spot and be creative."

As a part of a small business, small errors can seem huge. Sometimes they can seem to overpower all of the things you did well. So while we remember our biggest mistakes, and make note of what we can do better for the future, we hope to also remember some of our proudest moments because as much as we grow from our mistakes, we also grow from understanding our strengths.

That was a mistake... a bad, like a REALLY bad mistake! But it was in the past, we learned from it, and God definitely lead me throught it! Here we are now, Samantha Malizia Films, Inc. a name that's not the easiest to pronounce nor remember, but also hopefully it's one-of-a-kind!

Here's to noticing and growing from our mistakes, but realizing that we also have our small victories!

Samantha

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