From the time Microsoft launched PowerPoint as a tool that lets you make presentations and present them as slide shows, the software has been reigning all meetings. Though it should be given credit for bringing presentations to life and adding color to drab sales meetings, it is a fact that even a good thing can be overdone. Attendees sitting passively like students in traditional classrooms just watching a presentation does not anymore bring about the desired results by way of motivating your teams or achieving sales goals. Organizations and event management experts have realized that it will take a lot more than PowerPoint presentations to make meetings more effective. For a meeting to be successful the results need to be measurable in terms of goals achieved. For an attendee to be motivated by a meeting, the meeting needs to be engaging and interactive. Here are a few tips on how you can improve your sales meetings:
1. Engage your stakeholders in planning the meeting. Collect data from the attendees before, during and after the meeting to ensure full participation. Applying the info thus collected will help in making your meeting a lot more productive. For instance, a smart corporate meeting planner would poll the team on what information they need or would like to receive or what goals they have set for the next deliverable period. The data that you give out during the meeting would be based on the inputs to these poll-results. The point is that you want to pass on information to your team through this meeting. They will be happier if they get information that they need or can use.
2. It is not easy to form content for a sales meet based on inputs from the team. These inputs need to fit into the bigger plan – that of the organization itself. The organization’s business goals are the most important. It is crucial to segregate the wheat from the chaff, so to say, before deciding to include anything into the content for the meeting. Besides the stage needs to be set just right for the best content to be absorbed and applied and for the business to move forward.
3. It is a good idea to show people where they fit into the organization or how much the organization depends on their role. People like a feeling of importance; they like to know their contribution is recognized and appreciated. During your corporate event planning, you could also request your customers to give their inputs on what they like about your team or what they would like to get changed in the way your team handles a task. Knowing clearly what is expected of them, will make it easier for your team to set their goals.
4. Make sure to weave some corporate games into your meeting schedule. Make use of the latest technology, like a mobile app or any game that fits into your company’s overall structure and culture. You could even make a game out of quizzing the team on a recent session. This is sure to increase the level of engagement regardless of the value of the rewards given to the winners.
5. Use plenty of visual aids during the meeting. It could be clippings of your team at work or a chart depicting the growth of the organization. Better still, get your team to contribute to building a 3-D model or a sketch of how they perceive the organization or how they would like to chart a course for the future
6. Keep the speeches to a bare minimum, while getting the team on its feet and participating in some activity or the other. People tend to remember activities that they participate in and what they say a lot more than what is said by someone in a speech that they have no part in. Corporate even planners and event management companies can be roped in to give ideas to increase employee participation in a sales meet.
7. A truly successful meeting does not end once the team has dispersed. A well-designed action plan is necessary so that the team can implement the lessons learnt. You could select a few people from your team who would be held responsible for the progress of the entire team. This selection could be on a round robin basis. This will motivate the entire team to keep working on their action plan.
Following these seven simple steps will help to ensure that your sales meeting will get you the desired results. If you would like to learn more about our event and meeting planning services, please contact a local Plan Ahead Events franchise today.
With increasing public awareness of environmental issues, companies today are embracing “green” approaches to doing business more than ever before. That extends to corporate events and meetings – not only are these gatherings a driver of your company’s environmental impacts, they also have a high profile with the public. This high visibility gives your organization a venue to showcase its environmental stewardship and good citizenship.
There are a thousand ways you can “green” up your meetings, ranging from minor changes in material choices all the way to fundamental process revamps that can make a major contribution to “green” progress. Here are some substantive ideas that actually do something for the ecology, while also giving your PR folks something to point at with pride.
Go Local, Go Recycled, Go Austere
Buying locally-produced food and drink, decorations, and other meeting supplies saves fuel and boosts local suppliers. Making sure that your materials are green – programs printed on recycled paper, recycled coffee cups for the hospitality table, recycling bins for disposing of empties – is relatively straightforward and shouldn’t cost an arm and a leg. In addition, you can be strategic with your decisions – if one particular item is just impossible to source locally or just can’t be found in a recyclable format, that doesn’t stop you from doing what you can on the other items. Finally, consider reducing the use of material resources that just aren’t needed – rather than bringing a stack of 1,000 brochures (when last year’s meeting saw hundreds left on the tables), publish an online PDF of the same document and give attendees the link.
Raise Awareness – Do Something Real
Few things give people as much satisfaction as actually accomplishing something real with their own hands. At a large gathering, hold a creek cleanup or clear out a vacant lot. Coordinate with local environmental groups to find projects that are of appropriate scale and where your attendees can actually see something positive come out of their efforts. Take before-and-after photos of the place where your work has the best impact and include that as part of the meeting’s follow-up process.
It’s important for your company to make a positive contribution environmentally, and it’s also important that people know about that contribution – so whatever “green” elements you adopt for your meetings and events, don’t be shy about promoting them.
Planning events takes time, thought and effort—and for a really successful event, hiring an event planner to help is a must!—but the pay-off is worth it, simply because at events you have the opportunity to meet with your customers and a have a real, human face to face interaction. Writing in Forbes, Dave Lavinsky points out some of the advantages of events that nothing else can provide:
Read the entire article here.
ESPA is celebrating event and convention services managers for being "superstars of service." It includes networking events in cities across the country where ESPA members can network with colleagues, recruit new association members, and showcase to meeting planners the role they play in producing successful events. The host who organizes the most creative or unique event will win a complimentary registration to ESPA's 2013 annual conference.
"Event and convention services is vital to the success of any event," said ESPA President David Dvorak. "It's important that we take the time to celebrate our profession and all that we do...and what better way than with our peers on Sept. 20."
So you need a destination for an important conference or business meeting and wouldn't mind mixing a little bit of pleasure in as well to maximize positive attitudes? Offering incentive travel locations will more than likely optimize attendance as well excitement of employees once they arrive. Here are a few destinations to consider for your destination meeting places
with a few details to consider as well.
with a few details to consider as well.
Because of both the complex regulations and because so much media attention has been focused in the past year on government meeting spending, managing a government meeting has become challenging.
Sarah Vining, marketing manager at The National Conference Center (NCC), compiled a list of five easy tips for planners to simplify and streamline the many complex rules and regulations involved in the planning of government meetings.
1. Complete Meeting Packages – Use facilities that offer all inclusive pricing packages. Typically, most properties with complete meeting packages (CMP) are conference centers recognized by the International Association of Conference Centers. This allows the planner to focus on content for the meeting rather than micromanage the logistics. CMPs give planners flexibility with space needs like breakout space and meeting rooms without room rental fees
2. GSA Schedule – “Choose a venue on the GSA schedule,” advises Margo Palmer, one of NCC’s senior government sales managers. “You’ll eliminate a lot of time, extensive processes and market research by choosing a venue already on GSA.” The venues listed on the GSA schedule put forth all the groundwork to qualify and be listed on the schedule, which also simplifies the process for planners. The new category for easy meeting shopping is listed under the SIN number, 599-6.
3. Government pricing - Venues that offer government pricing all year long with no black-out dates indicate they’re committed to your best interests as a group and to having you as a long-term customer.
4. Metro-Accessible Location – Location allows government planners to control the procurement process and overcome certain obstacles. Venues that have ample parking and are easily accessible to an airport, especially an international airport, make the planning process easier.
5. Seasoned sales managers –Working with a venue staffed with seasoned government sales managers makes all the difference in the planning process. A seasoned government sales manager knows the federal rules and regulations and can coach you through the process.
These tips allow government meeting planners the ability to concentrate their energies on designing meetings that focus on bringing everyone together and delivering successful results.
Managing events is our passion at Plan Ahead Events, but managing events we create is even better. So says Helen Denning of Ontario/Rancho Cucamonga, CA who is planing the first ever "Inland Empire Chocolate Festival on Saturday April 21, 2012, from 11 AM to 8 PM at the Hilton Ontario Airport Hotel, 700 North Haven Ave. Ontario, CA 91764.
Who doesn't love chocolate? The event will feature tastings from chocolatiers, bakeries, coffees, and wineries. There will also be cooking demonstrations, music, entertainment, and shopping.
But it's not just about the chocolate. The Inland Empire Chocolate Festival will benefit Back to School JAM, an annual event where backpacks filled with school supplies are distributed to children in the local communities. Purchase tickets online at www.iechocolatefestival.com. Do it now before the event sells out!
In mostly non-US countries, MICE is an acronym for "Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions." In this directory, Plan Ahead Events gets worldwide exposure and kudos.
Plan Ahead Events is a full-service event management company serving clients worldwide, offering creative solutions for meetings, conventions, trade shows, special events, and incentive travel.
Reported in 2011 by the Convention Industry Council as a $650 billion industry worldwide, a career in event planning and owning an event planning franchise is one of the most exciting business opportunities available. Plan Ahead Events is one of the meeting and event industry's first franchise opportunities and very easy to start up as a home-based, low cost business.
No experience is necessary as they offer a turn-key franchise, a three-week training program, and all the technology hardware and software needed to run a successful event planning business.
Franchising puts you on the road to success without the risk experienced by independent business owners. Plan Ahead Events already has more than 65 franchisees in 5 countries.
Learn more about the industry’s first international event planning franchise at discover.planaheadevents.com.
According to the International Spa Association’s (ISPA) 2011 U.S. Spa Industry Study,
spas increasingly are making efforts to connect with their local communities — 69 percent of them by holding events at their facility,
The report, conducted by Pricewaterhouse Cooper shows that:
In addition to hosting events, many spas are raising their profile by donating products and services (85 percent) and by participating in charity benefits (62 percent).
Day spas comprise a significant majority of establishments (79 percent); resort/hotel spas comprise the second largest segment (9 percent), with medical spas a close third (8.7 percent). Other spa types include club, mineral springs, and destination spas.
The Northeast maintains the largest portion of spas with 25 percent while the Southwest region holds 23 percent of spas. The vast majority of spas (74 percent) are single location operations (i.e., not affiliated with a franchise or corporate headquarters).
The study indicates Americans are going to the spa more often and this fact has led to revenue growth. The increase in revenue is in line with the moderate pace of growth in the economy. Measures taken by spas to increase business included offerings through websites, special values and promotions, social media efforts, and connecting within their local communities. The economic recovery pace could not maintain the number of spa locations, resulting in a three percent decrease in the number of spas. Employment in the industry grew, but the lack of qualified therapists in the market is an underlying issue the spa community has been facing for several years.
For more information, visit: http://www.hospitalitynet.org/news//4053213.html
A service charge does not always go to staff who provide service. Asking for the breakdown of service charge disbursements will help you decide which additional gratuities to put into your meeting budget. And yes, you should budget for them, even though it’s difficult to estimate what you will actually offer for superior service.
Cathy Clifton’s guide can be used for estimating tips: (the entire article can be found here:
Set-up crew: $5-$7 per person, per day worked, from set-up day to departure
Banquet servers: $5-$7 per function worked -- breakfast, lunch and breaks, each day; $10-$15 per person for elaborate dinner functions
Bartender(s): $30-$50 per event for bartenders (if no tip jar was used)
Banquet captain: $10–$20 per meal function
Banquet chefs: $50-$100 per event (only if there were carving stations); same tip for the head chef for the entire meeting if he/she was helpful
A/V manager: $75 per meeting (only if you used their equipment, and he/she provided on-site assistance)
Conference service manager: $100-$500 per entire meeting. Often this person is your main contact on-site and should get the largest tip. If not, give the best tip to the person who was most helpful
Reservations manager: $50-$100 per entire meeting, based on overall involvement in the reservation process (if you have a lot of housing fires to put out the reservations manager can be key)
Other managers (security, housekeeping, bell desk): $40-$60 depending on their involvement with your event and the duration of the meeting
Miscellaneous tips: $2-$3 per staffer, per shipped box delivered; tip a staffer $20-$30
for hauling in any boxes from your car.
Tips for maid and bell service typically are included in the hotel contract.