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Are You Asking The Right Questions?

One of my favourite commercials because of the message is the Ally Banking commercial (Click here to view), which asks two young girls if they want a pony.  The first girl says yes immediately and is handed a plastic toy pony while the second girl is presented with a REAL pony.  The disappointment and anger on the first girl's face is classic.  When was the last time you have felt duped?      

While the words, 'buyer beware' are certainly a reality in our lives, it is because of this that our company plays such an integral role in this industry. It is not always what is written in the contract that will 'get you' but what is NOT there.  

From having a hotel double book their meeting space, to bumping business for a better 'more valuable' client, to having a hotel raise their F&B rates 22% in six months, or having a hotel start a major lobby construction three weeks out from a conference, sadly we have a number of examples simply because of the volume of business The Howes Group books plus our team's accumulated experience on both sides of the desk.  

If you asked a sales person to honestly tell you how often they have had to defend a decision that was made higher than their pay grade, everyone has at least one awful example of having to find the courage to call a client and tell them the 'news'. 

At times is does feel like David and Goliath.  Our role is to create balance.  The question is, do you want the real pony?
Timely yours, 

The Top 5 Ways to Take Advantage of the Lower Canadian Dollar. 

We have heard the doom and gloom about our faltering Canadian dollar vs. the American dollar.  As a meeting professional in this industry you know this has its disadvantages, while you are used to adapting to change and stretching resources.  Here are 5 ideas to take advantage of the low Canadian dollar:
  1. Think BIG:  Encourage your American colleagues and their partner organizations to come to Canada. Holding joint meetings or meetings back to back will potentially save money, leverage your spend through economies of scale and help the Canadian economy!
  2. Think locally grown: If you weren’t insisting on locally grown food already you now have another reason - the cost of food is steadily rising.  Work with your Convention Service Manager to ensure food is sourced locally where possible.
  3. Canadian content: Whether for gifts or conference speaker items think Canadian.  At this time you may find savings with the exchange as well as shipping.
  4. Learn from experience: Research what business was like before the low Canadian Dollar and how things changed as a result. Ask if you can prepay for an item in this current rate.  The one certainty is rate fluctuations.
  5. A well-oiled meeting plan: One of the reasons for the Canadian dollar falling below $0.70 US is the Canadian resource-based economy. In harder hit regions of the country, consider speaking to them now for a future meeting.  They may be more open to negotiate to secure future bookings as a base for their forecasts.  
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Congratulations to Janet Higgins of Rodd Hotels for being the winner of our draw! You have won our 'beach package' valued at $75.  We were so excited to hear that you will make good use of this for your trip in April to Punta Cana!  Send us a postcard!!  

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