Technology is ever changing, including within our own industry as meeting planners. New technology options, an increased number of conferences and travel budget constraints have once again brought up the value of face-to-face meetings. Many organizations attempt to quantify the return on investment for their employees that attend conferences.
To help conference attendees with these demands, it is imperative that we as meeting planners continue to provide relevant content, including education, speakers and overall value to all our stakeholders.
Face-to-face meetings are constantly being debated as to their value for an organization. I have attended many conferences as a meeting planner delegate. During conversations about where to host future meetings, I always insist on meeting the potential host and their staff before considering taking business to a destination.
Trust is the number one trait that meeting planners should looking for in a host partner. Each planner is placing part of their career success with his or her host, whether it is a convention and visitors bureau or hotel. This type of trust is also what makes face-to-face meetings so important for you as a meeting planner and for your conference attendees.
We as planners continue to investigate virtual meetings and video conferencing, but today more than ever, the relationship building that takes place during conferences continues to be the foundation for business success for all.
Joe Cappuzzello is responsible for locating host cities for the annual Small Market Meetings Conference, as well as for BankTravel, African American Travel, Going on Faith and Boomers in Groups travel conferences. He is the president and CEO for each of these organizations. He can be reached at 330-337-1027 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.