Hello! It’s nice to meet you via the computer screen! I’m Heather Seasholtz, CM’s new Vice President, Conference Operations. I oversee our team and collaborate with them on delivering quality events for our amazing clients.
As many of you know, we have been working through transitions coming out of COVID with new team members, new conference elements, implementing hybrid strategies, and getting back to in-person events. Since June, we have supported six clients with the delivery of their annual meetings. Summer is one of our busiest periods at CM and to see our team tackle multiple events, travel to several destinations, and put COVID prevention measures in place to keep our colleagues safe has been impressive to witness, to say the least.
This summer, we also entered into the world of exhibiting at industry events. We attended Cadmium Spark, not just as participants to learn the latest tips and tricks with the Cadmium products, but we also exhibited. If you are going to attend ASAE in Nashville, August 20-23, please stop by and visit the CM team at the Expo!
Over the past few months, I’ve had the honor of working on several of our client meetings either as a lead or supporting our team. I’ve had the pleasure to meet some of our clients face-to-face and get to know them through the fun we experience onsite, as well as assisting them with decision-making for in-the-moment situations. It’s been so fulfilling to get to know our partners and serve as an extension of their team.
A few things I’ve noticed while working our events:
- Onsite registration remains high. Many local attendees are deciding to attend once the meeting kicks off.
- Early birds still drive attendance, but not at the same quantity as pre-pandemic. Buying patterns are different than in 2019, making it very difficult to compare pace reports. 2022 is the new benchmark.
- Keep an eye on the CDC’s definition of “fully vaccinated” as it changed mid-planning for a few clients. This is mostly for meetings requiring vaccination.
- People are excited to meet again!
- Wellness should be a part of your event. I saw one client successfully implement a “quiet room” at their meeting, and it was a hit!
- Exhibitors are eager to return, CM will continue to prioritize exhibit hall traffic during planning.
For the remainder of 2022, I will be working with our teams on our fall meetings, preparing for spring 2023, and developing a quarterly blog or newsletter to share with our clients highlighting the trends we are seeing at CM, as well as showcasing our incredible staff. Please keep an eye on our website and social media channels for our information.
It’s been a whirlwind since I arrived and I have loved every second of it! Thank you for your support of Conference Managers. I look forward to hearing from you and serving as your partner in planning.
~Heather Feel free to reach out to me via email