Getting through Valentine's .... when everything is crammed into a few short hours ... is all about the three P's ... Planning, Planning and more Planning. In this quickfire list we bring you some out top tips to help you improve productivity and avoid, if possible, having to pull late night stints!
Always cut, condition and prep ALL flowers and foliage before you even start making up. Once you are on a roll you do not want to be slowed down by having to break off and start prepping/finding materials halfway through. This is a speed game.
Get roses batched and banded into dozens with the right amount of foliage so the design team simply have to pick up and make - not count.
Mixed bouquet with single rose can again be batched and loosely bound together … it speeds things up and, importantly, makes sure you don’t over stuff and lose money.
Do not worry about who they are for, where they are going. If you have 150 dozen red rose orders they all have to look the same, the cards etc go in at the end … just get them done!
Make each style of design at one time. Do not jump design to design as it makes things much slower. We know it’s not as creative/fun but as we say this is all about the speed.
Do the repetitive, bulk order designs first because working on a really special or creative juice inspiring design is easier and more fun even if you’re weary, than yet another rose hand tied!!
Make a few spares of each of the popular designs for the last-minute orders or to put out in the shop. Once you’re on a roll it will be easier to just keep going.
If you are a small shop cut, condition and make up at the same time so that your bouquets are standing and taking up water … not so good if you are short of space but can avoid double handling.
Have all packaging pre-cut and if possible folded so there’s no faffing around at the wrapping stage.
If you don’t have an automatic dosing machine for flower food, buy some cheap watering cans and pre-mix ready for filling your water bubbles
If space allows have a dedicated wrapping area or alternatively, rather than one person doing everything, create a production line … one making, one wrapping, one putting in bag/box and one labelling.
Cards, messages, care packs etc go on at the very last stage. Have someone dedicated to this and use raffle tickets to mark. One goes on the order, the other on the design … colour code to delivery routes if you aren’t using a system like Rose, Strelitzia or Floral Frog.
Don’t forget the finishing touches you may have sold – like chocolates/wine etc. Put extras in with the driver in case it’s missed off and make sure the driver also has a stash of while you were out cards (and a thank you note for the neighbour if you're leaving it with them - do get a signature!!) in case they can’t deliver and have to leave them somewhere. You do not have time for return visits!!