Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

December 29 2014

State of the Industry 2015 Brings Encouraging News

Eric Jacobson, VP, Media Development, Ascend Integrated Media

The Chapter’s 14th annual State of the Industry Program on November 6th was held at Pinstripes in Olathe, and was met with both positive, and cautionary reflection on what to expect in 2015.

 “It was great to hear that the economy bouncing back has had a positive impact on the hospitality industry.  People are planning meetings again and the hotel industry is thriving,” shared Helen Harrington, Hilton Kansas City Airport.  After attending the meeting she’s also feeling optimistic about the next 12 months.

However, she noted, one point of caution for her is how best to turn the focus from a “buyer’s” market to a “seller’s” market during the coming year.

Chapter member meeting attendees from the Children’s Hospital Association (CHA) in Overland Park, KS also found the meeting encouraging and informative.  Keri Magnuson, CMP says that her team’s takeaways were that planners need to:

  • Change our way of thinking: more business strategy, not just operational and tactical.

  • Provide more value during our meetings because the length of meeting days seem to be shortening.

  • Start questioning things we do at our conferences by giving things up that don’t make sense.

The CHA Events Team also sees the following change in the industry:

  • WiFi in meeting rooms, foyers and guest rooms is continuing to be a business need for our attendees and we expect hotels to work with us on keeping these costs down and manageable as they continue to invest in the infrastructure to support growing WiFi needs.

The team is optimistic that the industry as a whole will continue to thrive.  “We are also enthusiastic about our roles and how we impact the Association’s education strategy to expand education and engagement opportunities to the hospitals we serve,” said Keri Magnuson. 

The CHA team is less optimistic about the sure-to-come shorter lead times, lower rates, lower attrition, F&B minimums, and four-hour room holds. 

Overall, members felt optimistic about the coming year. And we enjoyed the networking and fellowship provided by Pinstripes. Happy new year!