Category Archives: Tips & Tools

Ms. Smart E. Pants: Boost your Business Manners

A: In today’s world of Twitter and Facebook, business and personal relationships have become, well, blurred. In addition, many companies don’t even have enforced dress codes anymore. It can be hard to navigate these friendlier types of work environments. But be careful and remember you are at work. Regardless of your company’s decorum and level…

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Conquering Adversity

The reality of life is that we are all never far from adversity, never far from that moment that changes us forever. It can be in the uncertainty of tomorrow or the harshness of today, but adversity finds us—at work and at home. It’s not a matter of if—it’s a matter of when. So how…

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Smart Talk: Interview with Kenneth J. Fischang, CHME, CMP

After majoring in tourism, restaurant and hotel management (plus foreign language) at Purdue University, Kenneth J. Fischang, CHME, CMP set a goal of working in as many different sectors of the hospitality industry as he could, to learn about it first-hand. And he has succeeded. Fischang started his career with Hyatt (Chicago, Lincolnwood, Long Beach…

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Job (In)security

These are definitely challenging economic times for the hospitality and meetings industries, as well as the country as a whole. Most companies are doing everything they can to survive the recession, but layoffs may be part of the equation. If you think your company or organization might go this route, you do have options: work…

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Ms. Smart E. Pants: Economy Vitals

A: America is experiencing its first significant drop in GDP since 1981, so few professionals have real experience with downturns like this. Also, this recession is different from anything experienced for the past 80 years, which has created a host of new conditions for planners. Take hotels for instance. According to the Washington Post “Some…

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Ms. Smart E. Pants: Giving back to the community

A: Dear Teresa, There are so many ways to find a viable and worthy charity. Start with determining what is most important to you and your corporation. Children? Environment? Learning? Any specific medical conditions or illnesses? Perhaps your neighbor’s son has autism or your father passed away from brain cancer. If you are still uncommitted,…

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Ask Ms. Smart E. Pants

Q: Do you have a list of hidden costs that I should ask when booking hotels? -Ms. L, Minnetonka, Minnesota A: Dear Ms. L,   Wouldn't life be so easy if in our business everything were available on an all-inclusive list? Sadly, it cannot be. And because every program and every meeting is different, let…

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Black & White…Or Gray?

Ethics isn’t a topic we often discuss, so for this month’s Smart Planner column we drew on a panel discussion focusing on “Ethics in Today’s Meeting Industry,” held at a MEETnow! MPI regional conference. As part of his introduction, moderator Rick Weaver, said “Oftentimes when considering the concept of ethics and the role that it…

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Laugh it Up

What do you get when you cross a Yale graduate with a Ringling Bros. clown? Success. Okay, so it’s not really a joke. The outcome in this case actually goes by the name Susan Landay, owner of Trainers Warehouse (trainerswarehouse.com), a business that offers hundreds of innovative products to help trainers and presenters engage their…

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