We Are The Faces of the Meetings Industry

August 11, 2009


Debbi Beldon, CMPExperient

Just got back from e4 – what a terrific time we had networking with clients, partners and colleagues. I learned a lot too. For instance, I learned that people really will follow me on Twitter, even though I’m not exactly sure why yet. I learned that I need more than five hours sleep a night and apparently that I get cranky if 45 minutes goes by without eating something. I also learned that it is unwise to drink an entire Diet Coke if the session is going to be 90 minutes long and the bathroom is a mile and a half away.

But seriously, I also had the pleasure of attending the closing general session where we learned from Roger Dow, President and CEO of the US Travel Association about what’s going on with the events industry.
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Independence Day in DC is like orchestrating a Conference!

July 2, 2009

Headshot_BReedBy Bill Reed – Experient

Living in the DC area has many advantages, and one of them is to participate in the Independence Day holiday events. Where else can you have a birthday party filled with a concert, good food and fireworks in your backyard that is worthy of being broadcast on television? Well, I guess it is really the Obama’s backyard this year more than my backyard.


The celebration is actually a ten day event (a conference if you will) that includes the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and involves:

  • a parade on Constitution Avenue…….. (like the introduction of your Board!
  • 3,000 performers and dancers………….. (like your conference staff)
  • giant balloons, bunting, streamers and banners……….  (like your registration area décor)
  • floats, and concession areas …….. (like your tradeshow exhibit floor)
  • military personnel from thirteen states………… (like your human arrows and badge checkers)
  • rooftop parties atop office buildings close to the mall….. (like your “In Conjunction With” events!)

I think of Bruce Harris, the founder of our company, every year at this time because one of the things that Bruce is well known and remembered for is the many days of teaching our new staff at employee orientation about the importance of “flow management.” Flow Management is Read the rest of this entry »

10 Tips for Easy Packing

June 18, 2009


By Jennifer Sommers – InterContinental Hotels

My role at work has changed recently and I’ve been traveling…a LOT!  I am becoming a better packer with each trip so I thought I’d share some of my tricks.  For anyone who isn’t a regular “road warrior” or fears over- packing and doesn’t like to drag along a large suitcase on those 3-5 day trips…here are some tips for packing smartly, lightly, and swiftly so you can focus on your trip and not what you may have forgotten!

  • Step #1: Invest in decent luggage!  I admit I spent more than I’d planned but I’m really pleased that I now have what are referred to in the luggage world as “spinners.”  My bags have 4 wheels allowing me to roll them forward, backward and sideways.  I can also tip them for pulling on carpet or roll them upright on linolium and marble floors.  The less pulling and tugging you have to do the more relaxed you’ll be while traveling.  In addition, my luggage also has handles on top, bottom and side making it easy to lift into the car and a hidden zipper pocket in the top of each bag which easily fits my smaller items like; toiletries, jewelry, make up and/or sweats and shoes.
  • Step #2: Start with a list.  You’ll find that when you list your day to day needs it helps you to be more organized and you’re likely not to forget anything.  Record your events by day and fill in what you plan to wear for each.  You’ll be able to see at a glance what you can mix/match and or if you have too much.  (P.S. If you keep your list with you and your luggage is lost it will come in handy to help you make fast time at a store replacing those items you need).
  • Step #3: Get a good toiletry bag!  I found one at  Read the rest of this entry »

Stepping Across the Pond

June 15, 2009

Brian Strickland

Brian Strickland

By Brian Strickland – Experient

The explosion of the information age has left many of us with the thought process the world has become a much smaller place.  While as a society we can communicate with few hurdles stopping us, there are some truths that still exist.   I found that out first hand while providing services for a client in Prague.

We have all become accustomed to tapping away on our Smartphone to people all over the globe.  Since we are talking through IM, Twitter, Skype, Facebook or rating something on Yelp, we feel the world is at our finger tips.  In many ways it is – until you get on that plane…  until you fly for 10 plus hours across six time zones. Until you find yourself four thousand miles from home and speaking a foreign language.  Then you realize all of that is a bit out the door, and your communication paths have to change.

But for so many of us as planners, adapting is our life.

This was something I kept saying to myself throughout the trip.  I will have to be honest; this was not my first attempt at an event across the pond.  But it was the first one outside of the European Union.  The account team spent countless hours testing and thinking through every possible scenario.  We even flew with the equipment to insure it arrived safely to Prague with us in one piece.  Sometimes even the best-laid plans can be flawed by unforeseen circumstances.  Read the rest of this entry »

Summer = Vacation

May 27, 2009

TTonioliwBy Teri Tonioli, CMP – Experient

Hello from Budapest!

Have you planned your summer vacation?  Is it the stress of it that is keeping you from starting the process?  Start by putting dates on your calendar.  Right now. I believe in putting them on my schedule in January vs. trying to find the time as the year progresses.  Now to the planning process.

Danube_riverOnce you know where you may want to go, it’s time to do the research.  In planning my trip to Vienna, Budapest and Prague, I started with the hotel websites.  The depth of these sites today is incredible!  After reading all there is to do at each location I realized….

I need more vacation time!
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