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What is the most important factor to consider when looking for a venue for your meeting?...

Is it cost, number and type of guest rooms, location, safety and security, type of venue, your audience and their expectations – or something else?

While all of these factors are important and must be given due consideration, the most important factor to consider is the meeting space.

The venue’s meeting space in order for the meeting to be successful first and foremost has to fit the needs of the group.

For instance, if you know you’re expecting 150 people and the program calls for general session space set classroom style set two people per six-foot tables, six breakouts of 25 each set in pod style, office space to accommodate 6-8, storage space for room gift assembly and delivery prep, registration space – all set to your specifications -- and separate function space for daily meal function and you want/need the meeting space, office and storage space available on a 24-hour hold – this is what the venues you are looking at must have for starters.

If you do not have your space requirements properly outlined at the request for proposal stage, then go to contract with anything less than and later find you need more or different space, you may be out of luck and unable to produce the desired outcomes. Worse, you may be at a loss financially if the venue no longer fits your needs and you are contractually obligated.

Defining your goals, objectives and key messages, identifying your intended audience, and having a clear understanding of the meeting and function space required from the get go is key to bringing forth a successful meeting.

Submitted by Mary Jo Wiseman, CMP | Author, "The Meeting Planning Process: A Guide to Planning Successful Meetings."



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