Feb 23, 2021
Anticipation is palpable in our industry as we put the second month of the new year behind us. Everyone is speculating and chomping at the bit to get back to the show floor. The big question is, are you ready?  What kind of question is that? Of course, you’re ready. There’s nothing you’ve ever been more ready for. Maybe a better question is, are you prepared? Have you put strategies in place to handle challenges in cash flow, overhead and growth? What could be worse than finally getting back to business and having to turn down work because you lack the capabilities or capacity to deliver?… more
Feb 16, 2021
Right now, health is on everyone’s mind, personally and professionally. While we don’t know how long this disruption will last, we do know this: the healthiest way to deliver successful events (and strong ROI) is to adapt to our changing industry and find new ways to enhance the virtual experience.  Healthcare association event leaders like the American Heart Association, the American Society of Hematology and the Radiological Society of North America have done just that, demonstrating incredible ingenuity to make their virtual events successful and engaging (note that these findings can… more
Feb 16, 2021
I recently paid a visit to my PO Box for the first time in about seven weeks, an activity I used to relish. About twice weekly, I would turn the key and have the mailbox door spring open with warm notes from vendors, new promotions, industry publications and, of course, a deluge of commission checks to commemorate how busy I’d been. Last week, as I could tell from the hollow sound turning the key, the mailbox was anything but full.  That said, there were tax forms, a handful of vendor gifts and two checks. These were the last two checks on which I’d been waiting. When these two commissions… more
Feb 11, 2021
What does being a “change agent” mean to you? Odds are, you already are one even if you don’t realize it! With 2020 being a pivotal year for us all, shift happened in a big way. I am certain that almost all of us received a big lesson on not only how to be an agent of change in our professional lives, but our personal ones, as well. What is an agent of change? An agent of change is anyone from inside or outside an organization who helps an organization to transform how it operates. A change agent will promote, champion, enable and support change. Does this sound like you? If this isn’t… more
Feb 09, 2021
Pressure building up, short turnaround times, last-minute decisions, a million balls to juggle—this is how an event organizer’s life looks like before his or her mega event. And what can make things worse are the small mistakes and mishaps that may occur because of the tension in the air.  While errors are part of the process, not acting on or learning from them is what makes the difference between a spectacular and an average event professional. If you want your event to be bulletproof, take a look at this list of the most common mistakes to avoid before going live with your next hybrid… more
Feb 04, 2021
For months, I have been listening to my colleagues and friends in the event industry and everyone has had the same question rolling around in our minds: when can large-scale events come back? At the beginning of the pandemic, we thought it would be Fall 2020 but clearly that didn’t happen. With the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine underway, many are seeing it as a sign of hope that we could be back in convention centers and ballrooms later this year. However, I have another thought on the timeline and here it is: If planned and delivered following the federal and state recommended COVID… more
Feb 02, 2021
I recently found myself breaking the ice with co-workers and colleagues asking, “What are some of your goals this year?” A new year is a clean slate coupled with a renewed sense of energy, so my inquiries were met with a lot of enthusiasm. Many of my peers had transparent and quantifiable goals, like reading 50 books. Others explained vague ideas like saving more money or starting a nonprofit. Regardless of the depth or detail provided, I found myself finishing their thoughts with reassurance, “Well you know it’s a marathon, not a sprint.” After using this phrase more often than I care to… more
Jan 28, 2021
Could hotel skeleton staffing levels offer freelancers the opportunity to help shape the future?  It’s hard to believe that in just two months we’ll be embarking upon the anniversary of the hospitality industry getting dismantled due to the effects of COVID-19. Not exactly an anniversary to celebrate, is it? I guess that depends on perspective though, as many individuals have risen from the ashes, focused on personal development and have possibly started new ventures where they are the boss now. Consider “freelancer” and “consultant” a few of your first 2021 buzzwords. Despite the hardship… more
Jan 26, 2021
I like to imagine that years from now I will be socializing with colleagues and, like old soldiers, we will recount stories from the darkest days of our careers way back in 2020. It’s taken a toll on everyone, in more ways than we can begin to catalog. But I am ready to put that pain in the past. None of us — as individuals or as businesses — is standing where we thought we’d be back in January 2020. There’s no point in dwelling on it. All we can do is look around, see where we are now and move forward from this place. If we’re smart and resourceful, we’ll treat it as a launchpad to the… more
Jan 21, 2021
I’m no different than most of you. I had a business plan for 2020. It was working nicely in January and February. Then WHAMMO! A veritable meteor hit the earth. COVID-19 was thrust upon us quickly, violently, changing our landscape entirely. Since then, we’ve been at “war” with this pandemic. It’s often felt like one step forward, three steps back. Shift happened. Shift is happening. And it will continue to shift during recovery, like sand under our feet. It can be maddening. We make plans and then later we have to throw out our playbook and change it all again many times as conditions… more

Partner Voices

As event professionals and destinations adjust, adapt and evolve in these uncharted waters, it is imperative that substantial resources be put in place for all of the people responsible for planning and executing trade shows, expositions and conventions. An example is Mohegan Sun, which built an industry-leading, COVID-19 Resource Center with a combination of pictures from recently held successful events (the property reopened on May 1, 2020) along with several widely available and informative documents, such as an evolving operational framework: