JUN 2012

ConventionSouth magazine is the leading resource for meeting planners who book all types of events, conventions, conferences and group travel in the south.

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Home Planning Directory perspective putting it in Meetings—The MEAT Of The Matter! Most of us don't have the budgets to frivolously and excessively spend money on things that don't really matter at our meetings. We just do our best to host it at a nice venue and offer an element of fun to energize and engage attendees. If you're like me, your jaw dropped wide open when the news broke some weeks back that the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA)—the arm of the government that regu- lates expenditures—was excessively spending on conferences like the nearly $900,000 western territory conference in Las Vegas in 2010. And much of that money was spent on silly things like clowns, games and gimmicks. Wow, to think what a ConventionSouth event would be like if we had that kind of money to spend—I'd plan a showstopper for meeting planners and suppliers for sure! Even if you don't have the cash for frills at your face-to-face events, you'll want to read our cover story, "Enough Of The Fluff." I interviewed the author of the book "Make Meetings Matter," Charles Hawkins. He basically said meeting planners should concentrate less on the frills and more on the content—or meat—of the meeting. He's had some great experience working with national organizations and even running an event production company, so he knows that some groups spend a lot of money to pro- duce elaborate events, but all the while the heart of these meetings—what attendees are taking away from them—is weak. He suggests that meeting planners get engaged with the content of the show and or- chestrate elements of the meeting to support the messages and bottom line—and he tells you how to do this in our story, and in even more detail, in his book. Supporting our timely cover story is a feature article on creating exciting presenta- tions as well as other features on how and where you can plan affordable meetings and events—and at the same time enhance the attendee experience. On a side note, ConventionSouth has some exciting new team members who are working to gather news and information to help you plan better meetings. We welcome Kim Lang, Laura English and Kris Wise to our team! And be sure to log on to our website to nominate planners and sites for our annual awards. Planner Resources Meeting Site Showcase ConventionSouth EXECUTIVE OFFICES 2001 West First Street Gulf Shores, AL 36542 MAILING ADDRESS P.O. Box 2267 Gulf Shores, AL 36547 TELEPHONE (251) 968-5300 E-MAIL FAX (251) 968-4532 WEBSITE PUBLISHER J. Talty OʼConnor ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER Marlane Bundock ASSISTANT EDITOR Kristen S. McIntosh DESIGN SERVICES MANAGER Kelly Williams GRAPHIC DESIGNER/ Jennifer Kelly INTERACTIVE MEDIA COORDINATOR MARKETING SERVICES MANAGERS Carrie OʼConnor Kim Lang Laura English Kris Wise MANAGER, TRAFFIC Dorothy P. White AND PROMOTIONS MARKETING COORDINATORS Beth Strickland Kelsey OʼConnor ACCOUNTANT Latricia Nall CIRCULATION MANAGER Ashley Brokowsky DATA ENTRY SPECIALIST Stephanie Eckman CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Janis Helton Marcia Bradford EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD Jenny Anderson, CMP National Association of College & University Business Officers David Bruce, MMP, HTS CMP Meeting Services Marlane Andrea Bundock is the associate publisher of ConventionSouth Media Group. Scan this tag & contact me with your thoughts! ConventionSouth (ISSN 1074-0627) is published monthly by Covey Communications Corp., P.O. Box 2267, Gulf Shores, AL 36547. It is mailed under Standard mail rates. POSTMASTER: CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED TO ConventionSouth Subscription Office, P.O. Box 2267, Gulf Shores, AL 36547. Editorial and advertising offices are located at 2001 West First St., Gulf Shores, AL 36542. Editorial ideas and manuscripts are welcomed. However, all unsolicited manuscripts and photographs must be sent with return postage; otherwise ConventionSouth cannot be responsible for returning them. Copyright 2012 by Covey Communications Corp. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without express written permission of the publisher is strictly forbidden. Jeff Hurt Velvet Chainsaw Consulting Robert Mandelbaum PKF Consulting Meg Slentz Nagy, CMP Meetings To Order Sue Walton May & Williams Ltd. James Hobbs Meeting Expectations Loriann White, CMM, CMP American Express Meetings & Events 6 ConventionSouth JUNE 2012 www.con v

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