So, you want to be a florist?
If so, here are some things you probably should know.
Question: What does a florist do?
Answer: The floral industry is one of the most misunderstood businesses. On the surface it is viewed as fun and relaxing, where, in reality it is complicated. Florists are selling a perishable product and many times the customer does not see it. They rely on the florists’ knowledge and skill to advise them. Florists also offer delivery as part of their service. The success of a shop depends on the timely manner deliveries are made. Retail floral is filled with many processes: purchasing, processing, selling, designing and delivering.
Q: Is a florist also an event planner?
A: No. A florist works with an event planner, but planning large events such as wedding is truly a separate business. While our courses are very comprehensive we do not suggest in any way that you are a certified event planner; to do so would be misleading. Today many people are looking to become certified event planners. If this is you, I would recommend that you visit NAVP, the National Association of Event Planners website at
www.nationalassociationofeventplanners.com There you can connect with people who can guide you on your path to certification.
Q: Why did you become a florist?
A: Fate and Passion. I began my career as a driver in my hometown florist after college and fell in love with the industry.
Q: What are the important skills required of a florist?
A: That you have a knowledge of the industry and you enjoy working with people. Quality communication is very important, remember that many times the customer doesn’t see what they are buying. Talent is also a very important ingredient, but talent can be cultivated. Not all floral students are “stars” in the beginning.
Q: How does someone get a job in the floral industry:
A: Start with a solid education at an accredited floral career school. And carefully research the school you are considering. There you will meet people in the industry that can help you make connections in the industry. When you start in a shop be willing to start at the bottom. Do whatever needs to be done and work up through the ranks of the business. In time you will be designing and after a year, or two, you will be able to call yourself an experienced designer.
Q: What is the salary range of a florist?
A: This is a tough one to answer. Salaries vary widely depending on the area of the country you are in. If you are working in a metropolitan city, or rural area. If it is a small shop to large event company, and most importantly, your ability and experience. How valuable are you to the business? Florist can earn from minimum wage up to forty dollars per hour.
Q: Should florists have a web site?
A: Absolutely, and keep it current with you designs and price points. At the South Florida Center for Floral Studies we discuss technology and how to make it work for you. There are many steps a florist can take using social media to market themselves.
Q: How many hours will I work:
A: As many as it takes to get the job done. Florists typically work longer hours at peak times: holidays and special events such as weddings and with sympathy work. We burn the late night oil until the work is done.