Successful Meetings - June 2008 - (Page 10)

06.08 & ANALYSIS > Industry Trends NEWS Weak Economy Affecting Budgets With the softening economy making the news every day, it’s no surprise that the latest survey of 344 corporate and association meeting planners by SM sister publication MeetingNews showed that a majority of planners are now having their budgets slashed. Corporate planners are feeling the sting slightly more than association planners: 66 percent of the corporate planners polled say their budgets have already been reduced, versus 52.5 percent among association planners. Attendance, too, has dropped, according to 40 percent of the corporate planners and 47.5 percent of the association planners surveyed. At presstime, Charmaine Wright, associate director of Washington DCbased National Tax Association, was waiting for her final numbers for the group’s spring meeting, but she says, “It’s a safe bet that our numbers will not reach what they’ve been in the past. Registration has been slow, and what we’re seeing is that government agencies that previously sent 16 or so attendees have only two signed up this year. We’re definitely seeing the impact of the economy on this meeting.” Still, 20 percent of the corporate planners and 31 percent of the association planners in the survey are experiencing “no change” in their programs. That’s been the case for Mollie Rasor, executive director of the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Association, in Raleigh. “So far, the numbers are looking the same, and we’re keeping everything the way it’s been,” she says. “We’re not getting more extravagant, but we’re also not cutting back.” Rasor did note that her two conferences might be unusual in that “vets have to have 20 hours a year of continuing education to keep their licenses.” Says Rasor: “They can only get a few of those hours online, and the rest has to be through in-person training. What- IN IT FOR THE LONG HAUL What is your general outlook for U.S. economic recovery? Expect extended instability before a full recovery 49.7% 29.1% 28.9% 34.7% 25.5% 28.5% 12.7% 17.3% Corporate Planners Association Planners Expect a short downturn Expect extended challenges due to shifting world economic power Don’t know SOURCE: MEETINGNEWS SURVEY OF 344 MEETING PLANNERS ever the economy is, if they want to keep practicing, they need those hours.” While only 9.5 percent of the association planners surveyed say that their overall meeting schedules have been reduced, 34.5 percent of corporate planners have seen decreases in their number of meetings. Farm Credit of South Florida straddles the two, as an JUNE 2008 SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS 10

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Successful Meetings - June 2008

Successful Meetings - June 2008
Editor's Note
Industry Trends
Planner Spotlight: Kelly Broz
Technology Talk
Food & Beverage
Websites of the Month
Pre-Event: Tech
Pre-Event: Bartering
Tools of the Trade
Dialing for Dollars
The All-in-One Resort
Bottom-Line Speakers
Places & Spaces
Florida’s West Coast

Successful Meetings - June 2008