Meetings Focus Blog

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


Home Stay Accommodations & Meetings Impact

Home rentals are an increasingly popular choice for meeting attendees. Using an online service such as Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway, or even Couchsurfing, guests can choose to stay in more spacious accommodations, frequently at lower cost, rather than pay the hotel group rate negotiated by the meeting sponsor. With the rise of home-sharing services, meeting organizers may consider making these arrangements an option for attendees, even listing them in meeting registration materials. These services are even reaching out to gain a share of the meeting business. These may be attractive alternative accommodations. But meeting planners who suggest that their guests consider home stays ...

Why You Are Worth It!

The biggest and best form of investment you can make is investing in YOU! I was reading an article the other day stating that, on average, women currently make 77 cents to a man's dollar. How does that look in real-life? As an example, if a man earns $100,000; based on this average, women earn $77,000. There is a long way to go to close that gap. Now the disparity in pay amongst the sexes is a conversation that is essential to have—and it is a personal desire of mine that the hospitality industry could lead the way in this societal ...

Sliding Solo at the Kalahari Resort

In my time with Meetings Focus I’ve been able to attend a number of press trips to gain a better perspective on the destinations and properties we cover each month. However, a visit to Kalahari Resort in Sandusky, Ohio, this past summer was a little more unusual in that it was the first 100% family-friendly convention resort that I had visited, and I was left to my own devices to explore, as it was not part of a formal press trip and mostly over the weekend. This created an interesting dynamic, in which none of the resort’s staff—outside of the ones ...

Unplugging Can Be the Best Way to Connect

In a meetings industry—and world—increasingly focused on mobile devices and techie connectivity, really getting away from it all has become more challenging than ever. The same tools and platforms that once seemed designed to free us from the office can serve us as a double-edged sword, providing planners and attendees with a 24/7 accessibility that makes it impossible to truly escape the office hustle and bustle for even an instant. I recently explored the meetings landscape for a variety of ‘unplugged’ locales that make disconnecting a snap, leaving your attendees free to network, brainstorm or just play in a wireless way ...

Want Happiness? Get Education

A friend recently posted the following quote on their Facebook page: "Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely." -- Karen Kaiser Clark And it inspired me to answer the question I have been asked several times - "Do I have to continue with education?" Quite frankly, no. It is optional. But remember, life will continue to change. New challenges will be presented as well as new opportunities. Growing into those challenges and those opportunities are your choice. Understand each of those challenges and opportunities are a prospect to learn—to be educated—to glean continuing education. Each offer you the opportunity to grow...and be ...

Best Practices for Calculating Hotel Food & Beverage Minimums

As a planner, one of the most important parts of a program is not only the quality of the food, but staying within one’s food and beverage budget. To assist clients in staying within their means, hotels have developed suggested spend per person as a guide. In most cases, food and beverage minimums are set on the client’s anticipated spend by calculating the number of attendees by the hotel's average banquet pricing. Depending on this number and the hotel's revenue requirements to contract function space, rental may be charged and/or a higher food and beverage minimum may be set ...

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12 Years a Slave is a 2013 British-American historical drama filmand an adaptation of the 1853 slave narrative memoir Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup, a New York State-born free African-American man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C. in 1841 and sold into slavery.