Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM, Named to Top 250 People in Canadian Events List by BizBash

National (January 14, 2020) — BizBash, North America’s number one resource for event industry trends, ideas, and inspiration, has announced its 2019 list of Top 250 people in events. This anticipated list of event professionals from across the United States includes industry leaders from all backgrounds who are redefining live experiences—from fund-raising pros to festival organizers, caterers, tech gurus, event producers, and everyone in between.

“It’s an honour to be recognized as a leader in our industry. I love producing events, love making an impact, and am grateful to those who recognize the hard work that goes in to the incredible work that we do!”, says Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM.

“This year’s list of creative, smart, and strategic event industry professionals represents the best of the industry,” said BizBash editor in chief Beth Kormanik. “We’re thrilled to recognize them as the BizBash Canada 250.”

The “Top 250 People in Canadian Events” feature can be seen at bizba.sh/top250 as well as the print and digital editions of the 2020 BizBash Best Canada (www.bizbash.com/magazine).

FOR MORE INFORMATION
Beth Kormanik, editor in chief of BizBash, is available for comments. For additional information, contact Brittany Bucceroni at bbucceroni@bizbash.com or 646.839.6846.

ABOUT BIZBASH
BizBash empowers event professionals with ideas, intelligence, and resources to create smarter events. Each month, the most elite names in events across North America look to BizBash for venue discovery, event style, technology, and tools for their next event.

Making Your Next Conference More Sustainable

Sustainability has been a topic for YEARS – and with the next generation of planners and conference attendees; it is going to be increasingly important. How are you, as an event professional, going to meet the demand of hosting a “green meeting”? Here are a 7 tips to help you get started:

Where You Meet Should Be Green:

Location, Location, Location: Yes, venues are one of the most important things to think about in this process. When selecting your venue, or your host city, ask questions:

  • What are their green meeting/sustainability practices?
  • What certifications do they hold?
  • Are they members of any green meeting programs? What is the status of their review?
  • What programs do they have in place at the venue to help you achieve your sustainability goals?

Need to Move People Offsite? Set up Group Transport: Do not leave it to them to figure out their own way there, unless it really is within walking distance. Set up group transportation, or prepare for public transportation in advance.

Food & Beverage:

Cut Down on Food Waste: Nothing drives me more crazy than ordering more food than needed – when providing guarantees, review the timing and registration lists; and be reasonable with your numbers (how many people are REALLY going to get out of bed for your 7AM breakfast the morning after a late night social event?). Confirm with your venue that you are able to make adjustments to actual numbers given enough notice while onsite – for example, if you are opening registration on Wednesday, and the gala dinner is Friday night, can you confirm who will be leaving early while they pick up their name badge? Are you able to update those numbers?

Who You Work With:

Hire the Right Partners: You should not be doing this in a silo – your partners (venue, catering, audio-visual, entertainment, transportation, décor, etc) should all be on site when it comes to creating an impactful experience for attendees, and being sustainable all at once.

Other Suggestions:

Go Paperless: Save a forest by cutting down or completely eliminating printed programs, and use an event app.

Donate Unused Material: Does your group have items that are leftover that a local school, or charity? Ask the venue, or the DMO for advice on how to handle this in the next city.

Involve Your Participants: Don’t just leave it in your court – encourage your participants to be a part of the process! Our friend Natalie Lowe, CMM at the Sustainable Planner has tips for encouraging delegates to be sustainable here.

Need some assistance planning your next conference? We can help! Contact bettyanne@proplan.ca for a consultation.

Needing to Interview Your Next #EventPreneur? We Have Some Questions For You!

Most organizations who seek an event professional issue a Request For Proposal (RFP), receive a bunch of proposals, weed out the ones that are not the right fit, and then interview and hire.

When it comes to the interview process, are you asking the right questions? Are you finding the right fit for your organization?

Yes, it does have to do with personality and experience. But how do you find this out? Well, we have some questions for you!

Because we have been doing this for over 25 years, and have been interviewed more times than we can count, we have developed a list of questions that you can use for your next #EventPreneur interview. We listed these out because these are our favourites to answer!

We are offering both operational and role-specific questions here; and hope you are able to grab a few that are new. Ones that will help you find the right fit for your organization for years to come.

And, if you are looking for someone to help you deliver The ‘WOW’ Factor with your next program, please let us know. We’d love to help you design an experience to remember!

But for now, this is what you wanted. Click here to download our resource, “Preparing for Your Event Professional Interview“. Enjoy!

To Hire or Outsource? Which #EventPlanner Path is right for you?

From venue selection, to registration management, to speaker management, to F&B options, to onsite delivery, planning an event or conference is a ton of responsibility. Do you hire in-house or do you outsource? Which one is the right path for you?

ProPlan Conferences & Events Principal, Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM, Inducted into Hall of Fame

August 23, 2019—FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ProPlan Conferences & Events Principal, Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM, Inducted into the Hall of Fame for the Second Time

Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM, Principal of ProPlan Conferences & Events has been inducted into the Meetings Industry Hall of Fame in 2019 – marking the second time Bettyanne received this prestigious honor.

In 2019; Bettyanne was inducted with fellow colleagues Reggie Lang (WestJet) and Candace Schierling (Tourism Saskatoon) under the Big Idea Category. This category was introduced in 2014 to honor an individual planner or supplier who has come up with and helped to implement an idea that has improved the productivity, profitability, culture and/or operational systems of a specific company/business.

Bettyanne, Reggie and Candace were awarded this honor because of their strategic work and production of the VIPlane Experience, leading up to the PCMA Canadian Innovation Conference in Victoria, BC.

Click here to see a short video featuring the VIPlane experience (1 minute, 30 second). Video courtesy of Freeman Audio Visual Canada.

This marks the second time that Bettyanne Sherrer, CMP, CMM has been inducted into the Meetings Industry Hall of Fame. In 2013, she was inducted under the Industry Planner Category.

The Industry Planner category celebrates Canada’s top meeting or incentive-travel planner—someone who represents everything a planning professional should be.

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame was launched in 2009 by Meetings + Incentive Travel Magazine and is now carried forward by CMEExpo, Canada’s largest tradeshow and conference for meeting and event professionals.

The mandate of the Hall of Fame is to recognize and celebrate individuals who have distinguished themselves in the Canadian meetings and incentive travel industry. It is the only independent awards program for event professionals and suppliers in the country.

Seriously? Are we rigging PINK to fly in to greet participants?

This rant, unfortunately, takes aim at AV services.  And while I am going to come at this with shock and frustration, I am also going to plead with you, end user/client, to pick quotes apart with a fine tooth comb. But I also need to plead with AV companies servicing the meetings industry, to please, PLEASE, demonstrate your commitment to the industry.

So, let me back up.  This time, I am working in partnership with another firm to produce an event for one of their clients, who is holding their annual event in Toronto.  They are a national association, and their event rotates across Canada.  Annually, they hope to see anywhere from 400-600 people (depending on location).

This event will have all sessions and special events under one roof (except for one social event which is offsite, and the AV company has nothing to do with).

They want straight forward services – screens, podiums, mics, maybe a tad bit of lighting to make it interesting, but that is about it.

So, when I see the quote they received from the AV company prior to our involvement to produce this for them – I was literally speechless (which you all know is rare for me!).  Ready? Here it is:

OVER $250K for 3 days of the major conference + 2 Days of small board & committee meetings. UGH.

But wait…. they are here to help!

THEY WERE gracious enough <hope you can see my sarcasm here> to offer about $165K off between discounts and concessions, bringing the grand total of the quote down to around $85K.

In comparison, I am spending about $55K elsewhere, for WAY more WOW FACTOR in AV in the same month.

My head exploded.  Serious, are we rigging PINK to fly in and greet participants here or what?

OK, so my whining about this is over.  So, what now?

First, to the AV companies, what is your service worth? DO NOT QUOTE $250K if you are really valuing it at $85K (it doesn’t impress anyone). And even then, I question whether it is worth $85K (trust me, it’s not, and this will be questioned and brought back down to earth).

Second, I got my hands on this quote by accident, the client brought us in last minute to work on this event because of unforeseen circumstances.  And, quite frankly, based on what I have seen, they would have paid this fee if they had not brought in a professional.

Finally, if you are an organization who plans annual conferences, have either an experienced planner on staff who know what they are looking at and works with a budget (from creation to reconciliation). If you do not have that in house, then you should hire a professional who has your back.

Bettyanne’s Rant: Why Pick On the Little Guys?

Well, it did not take too long to post my first rant.

I have a client – a delightful client – who has asked me to help produce a workshop series to introduce some incredibly important content to the healthcare sector. While I cannot name their organization specifically – trust me – not only is this content near and dear to my heart, it is SO important to the welfare of many of our citizens in Ontario – and Canada.

We have rounded out months of ongoing work with a key event coming soon; and as expected, I am in the midst of reviewing both BEOs and AV estimates from the hotel of choice. And I am astounded.

I do not require a ton of AV for this event (not like some of the other conferences and events that I do) – it is about the content; a screen, podium and small sound system is all I need. So when I see an estimate that is 3 times more than I have paid for the exact same equipment elsewhere, of course – I question it. The only difference is this hotel is in the GTA and not a smaller city in the province. While I understand supply and demand (yes, of course prices are higher in Toronto), but 3x more? Again, I had to question it. Unfortunately the responses I received offered no solutions, just justification. I was “schooled” on why it is SO pricey (the equipment has to be set up, it’s not a permanent installation), and that I also have to pay a gratuity on top of that (which I was advised is an industry standard)…SERIOUSLY?!

Is this client huge revenue for them? NO. Do they have repeat business? Not likely – at least not in the foreseeable future.

So, there are two things that bother me here. If the value of this event was bigger, I could negotiate show rates vs day rates on rentals and look to other ways to reduce these costs – but we are just the little guy here. It was already a struggle to get space when our bedroom to meeting space ratio was way off.

Second, we know that AV companies pay a large premium back to the hotel for the privilege of being their in-house AV supplier. So why is my client being asked to also support the financial arrangement by paying out an additional 18% service charge? I have no problem paying a fair price for quality goods and services. I’m just not seeing the value here.

In this new reality of amalgamation – the little guy is losing…

Welcome to The WOW Factor

Welcome to The WOW Factor, the new blog by ProPlan Conferences & Events. This first post is our commitment to you as our readers.