Meetings Focus Blog

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Industry experts discuss a variety of topics specific to the meetings and events industry.


A Proposal is NOT a Contract!

Please note: this blog post is not a solicitation of services. Please do not write in the comments or to me directly about your company and/or the services you provide. This is strictly about how we still, in this industry, don't know the difference between a proposal and a contract. A client is in need of a company to provide on-site meeting services—bag stuffing, registration staffing, session badge-checking—at their upcoming annual meeting. They solicited proposals, received one of the two they solicited with no response from the other company, both of which were recommended by their convention hotel.* I solicited one other ...

What about those long head tables?

I'll get back to my blog series on "Industry Education" in a few days. For now, a short digression with highlights and questions from my viewing of the recent White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, held Saturday, April 25, 2015, at the Hilton Washington in DC. No, I didn't attend in person nor have I ever. Junkies for politics and news, my husband and I try to watch it every year, always on C-SPAN. Sure, listening to the roar of the crowd before the program begins might be boring but listening to inane comments on various broadcasts as they watch and ...

Opinions Wanted - Now that You Know Now

So here I find myself again, mid-semester teaching an event management class to community college students and wondering if I selected the correct topics for my lesson plan. Twenty eager students are looking for guidance and basic information on the event management industry, how to potentially enter the industry and if this career is right for them. It is my daunting job to get them ready to potentially begin a career in this industry or inspire them to enter the field. I use the word "daunting" as this is how I feel each semester when I begin to put my lesson ...

Free Education - Yes, Free!

I recently completed several online module sessions to receive a certificate in Distance Education Learning. It was an interesting course and really clarified the difference of teaching and learning in a "resident environment"—meaning face to face in a physical classroom—versus in an "online environment," conducting interaction through technology. Distance education is not as simple as taking a lesson plan taught in a standard resident classroom and making it available online. Online education takes work to ensure full engagement, comprehension, clarity, and effectiveness both for the educator and the learner. The benefits of distance learning and education can be far reaching (pun ...

Industry Education: 1 of 3 Steps to Improvement

In January, at PCMA’s Convening Leaders conference, and since, including, most recently, at ExhibitorLive, I’ve had too many conversations about what’s lacking in industry knowledge, professionalism and education to continue to ignore writing. The conversations—with industry academics; with Boomer, Gen Xer and Millennial planners and suppliers; with “veterans” (often referred to as “senior planners”) and those newer to the industry or those with little formal training—all confirmed what I’ve seen and believed for a long time: our industry is not smart. Why? Because we keep doing the same things and ... well, not getting results that will convince the general ...

Not Your Elevator Speech - Your Story!

An article, an obituary, a cartoon and a class contributed to the thinking behind the creation of this blog. And more, to thinking about our individual stories. The article: From The New Yorker, Mary Norris’ story "Holy Writ", tells of her winding road to becoming the “Comma Queen” at that publication. The telling of her story and the story itself delighted me! (OY! Am I missing necessary commas?). Her early life, her decisions, the chance encounters, her risks, and opportunities, are like many of ours. Perhaps the difference is that, in her story, she took advantage of the un-outlined chapter. Her ...