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Meeting Industry Challenges And Solutions
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Meeting Industry Challenges And Solutions


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Shrinking budgets, shortened planning windows, increased attrition, cancellation fees, contract negotiations and technology all can be formidable challenges to planning meetings and events. Planners …

Shrinking budgets, shortened planning windows, increased attrition, cancellation fees, contract negotiations and technology all can be formidable challenges to planning meetings and events. Planners attending the PYM LIVE Event in Austin in April 2009 asked the questions; Plan Your Meetings' Editorial Director Kristi Casey Sanders presented the solutions.

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  • Transcript

    • 1. Industry Challenges & Solutions Presented by Kristi Casey Sanders Editorial Director/Chief Storyteller Plan Your Meetings
    • 2. Biggest challenges • Budgets • • •
    • 3. Biggest challenges • Budgets • Negotiations/strategy • •
    • 4. Biggest challenges • Budgets • Negotiations/strategy • Life/work balance •
    • 5. Biggest challenges • Budgets • Negotiations/strategy • Life/work balance • Education/advocacy
    • 6. Text Budgets Image by StephenPoff
    • 7. Cost-saving strategies • Reduce/Reuse/Recycle/Repurpose • BYOStuff (projectors, supplies, signage) • Get more than 3 quotes on everything • Everything is negotiable; ask questions • Know what’s essential • Get scrappy Image by Newton Free Library
    • 8. Just ask • Suppliers are your best friends & resource • Customize • Soft vs. hard dollars • Relationships are key • Know the going rate Image by DavidDMuir
    • 9. Other bright ideas: • Think theme • Kill two birds with one stone • F&B reduction strategies • Go local (colleges, state buildings, neighborhood taverns, etc.) • Book hotel rooms like weddings do or look at • Transportation • Piggyback! Image by Kristi Sanders
    • 10. “152+ Ways to Stretch Your Planning Dollars” E-mail for a copy of this whitepaper
    • 11. Negotiations/Strategy Image by NoHoDamon
    • 12. Contract negotiations • Contracts are written to favor the venue • Everything is negotiable • Ask about everything that’s not clear or defined • Strike out redundancies • Protect your group Image by Jk5854
    • 13. Remember: • You can ask before the contract is signed; afterwards it’s just begging • It’s a two-way street • Customize attrition, cancellation & group rate clauses • Cross out double-dipping fees • Put everything in writing • You can include incentives/penalties Image by Christopher Chan
    • 14. Cancellations • Spell out what will happen to the deposit in the contract, how it may be applied in the future, if rooms may be released or resold • Be honest and upfront • Communicate as soon as you know • Work with suppliers/venues to make it a win/win • With hotel’s permission, repost unsold rooms on Image by Emtboy9
    • 15. Attrition • Be honest about the numbers • Can supplier/partners help you with marketing? • Can a portion of the attrition fee be used to enhance the event? Image by NathanaelB
    • 16. Driving attendance • Know your audience • Plan how to engage them before, during and after event • Use social media; contact regular media • Enlist their aid creating content • Give incentives for referrals • Partner to get the word out Image by .mw
    • 17. Engage the audience • Content is king • User-generated, on-demand • Multiple generations • Individualized, authentic, “special” experiences • Leverage technology • Give back to community Images by Carf (top and bottom); and Text 100
    • 18. Need ideas? • Industry events/trade shows • Destination guides & resource directory: • Searchable city listings: • Ask your peers: or • Ask local CVBs, search Web sites, ask your favorite museums, restaurants, clubs about space Image by Zadro
    • 19. “The Practical Guide to Meeting Planning” Download this “meeting planner’s bible”
    • 20. Striking a Balance Image by Geekgirly
    • 21. Toxic workplaces • Team-building, communication is essential • “Five Dysfunctions of a Team” by Patrick Lencioni • Don’t expect everyone to work 24/7 • Have a life; take a break • Share testimonials, say thanks! Image by Toastforbrekkie
    • 22. Bad customer service • Address the issue when it happens • Explain why it’s unacceptable • Fill out satisfaction surveys honestly • Talk to managers; ask for new sales contact, if needed • Pay for the level of service you get Image by Kharied
    • 23. You can do it: • Just say “no” to toxic people • Give honest critique & feedback • Listen • Accentuate the positive • Focus on goals, solutions • Take care of yourself Image by Themis Chapsis
    • 24. Setting a price for your services • How much do you want to make a year? • How much do you need to get by on? • Shoot for the high end, but be realistic • Build in a treat for a job well done Image by Swamysk
    • 25. Education/Advocacy
    • 26. Getting certified • Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation is available through • There are 18 designations you can earn. Find the one that’s right for you at: advice/ (1/08/08) Image by DavidDMuir
    • 27. Get strategic • Know goals • How is success measured? • Track return on investment (ROI) and return on objective (ROO) • Keep a record of your successes • Prove Your Worth as a Meeting Planner presentation at Image by Caribbeanfreephoto
    • 28. Educate policy makers Industry news & action sites: • • • • •
    • 29. Keep learning • James Hogg’s “Emergent Technologies for Meeting Professionals” presentation: (11/21/08) • “Going green in 5 easy steps”: (4/24/09) • Advice on PR/sponsorships/marketing: (7/27/07-8/06/08) • • Go to industry events, network with your peers, travel, read Image by Svenwerk
    • 30. Questions?
    • 31. Thank you for tuning in! Let’s continue the conversation: Twitter @PYMLive KCSanders at