Meetings and Events
If you agree with the principal that "anything that can go wrong, will," you'll understand why a contingency plan is so important to your meeting and event. The articles below can help you put one together or check to see that yours covers all it should.
You must have an emergency plan to ensure attendee safety and business continuity in a world where the occurrence of the unexpected is increasingly likely.
The most important thing you can do for any event is to have a contingency plan.
It is critical that an event contingency plan include a system for implementing the plan, including making sure that those it protects know of its existence and what it provides.
You do have to consider the problems individuals can cause at an event.
If you can answer these questions your venue may put to you, you probably have a contingency plan.
Video and virtual meetings can be the answer to meeting disruptions.
As always, we look forward to hearing your comments & insights regarding business continuity.
If you have a topic you'd like us to cover, email me at
Bob Mellinger, President
1. Emergency Plans Target Attendee Safety, Business Continuity
The savviest organizations are moving past the widespread industry prohibition against discussing onsite emergency procedures or acknowledging seasonal risk for fear of reminding meeting planners or attendees that something could happen to their events, facilities or supplier firms. Industry leaders are being more deliberate about communicating their emergency plans to partners, clients and staff, and some are going a giant step beyond.
2. Planning an Event? Better Have a Contingency Plan
Event planning is a difficult process, whether you're a layperson or public relations pro. Schedules need to be coordinated, collateral material needs to be assembled, and presentations need to be prepared. Entertainment and catering services may need to be booked, and guests must be attended to. Securing a site for an event can prove troublesome depending on the budget, and setting an agenda can be a pain when too many people are involved in the planning process. But as I learned recently, sometimes the biggest secret to successful event planning is having a contingency plan.
3. Special Events Contingency Planning Checklist
The goal of contingency planning is to protect life safety and to identify specific information as it pertains to a special event. A special event is non routine, places a strain on resources, may involve a large number of people, and requires special permits or additional planning, preparation, and mitigation. When preparing this plan, please consider the scope of the event, risks to spectators and participants, impact on the community, and emergency support required.
This checklist is designed to verify that you have included the most critical items for contingency planning, but could also greatly assist people in the plan development as well.
4. Dealing with disruptive individuals in meetings
People who conduct meetings are often troubled by the behavior of a person in attendance who is disrupting the proceedings. It is important for leaders to have a repertoire of responses in such situations in order to maintain control and to accomplish the objectives of the meeting. The leader should take initiatives to minimize disruptions and to maintain control over meetings when dominating behavior occurs.
5. Contingency Planning: A View from the Venue Side of the House
This article examines what a venue should prepare in advance, and how to deal with the issues that arise during an event. What a venue needs to be aware of are the potential dilemmas that can arise when a less experienced planner is organizing and managing the meeting. Let's take a look at some of questions that you, the venue pro, can ask the client to reduce the likelihood of an avoidable situation arising.
6. Hospitality Business Models Confront the Future of Meetings
The Center for Hospitality Research at Cornell has prepared this white paper for the hospitality industry, focusing on meeting options that can be especially effective in tough economic times. For meeting planners, it provides a look into the vendors' take on meetings and could give you some options in the event you have to change your plans.
Quote of the Week:
"The tendency of an event to occur varies inversely with one's preparation for it."
-- David Searles