A Different Kind of Green

Every year on March 17th, people from across the world celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. This day has become a holiday honoring Irish culture with parades, food, and of course, the color green! This year we invite you to put down the green beer and consider for a moment, what are we doing to keep our planet green?

Our industry is one that never sleeps.  Meetings and Events require hours of high intensity, lights, music, AV equipment, travel elements and more.  For the past few years there has been a trend to move towards more sustainable meetings by repurposing florals, utilizing space powered by  solar, transferring communications from paper to electronic and so on. The Green Meetings Industry Council has been instrumental in encouraging our industry to move to a more sustainable existence.  Now LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a green building certification which recognizes the most sustainable building practices, is expanding into our realm. Announcing this year a LEED certification level specific to hospitality. Achieving this certification reduces the strain on our natural resources further propelling us into a responsible approach when servicing our clients.

JNR is proud to share that we reside in a LEED certified building. So while we are diligently planning your next meeting or event, we are also cognizant of the environment that supports us and gives us our livelihood. LEED certified buildings use less water, energy, and reduce green-house gasses.

So ask yourself, what can you do to make today a little greener?

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!


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Written by Kalyn Tripodi

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JNR Incorporated is a globally recognized leader specializing in creating custom programs that motivate, engage and reward the employees, customers and channel members of our Fortune 1000 clients. For over 35 years, JNR has designed and delivered a comprehensive suite of solutions including incentive travel, prepaid reward and gift cards, meetings and conferences, events and entertainment, technology solutions and marketing communications.  Our programs produce measurable results and are proven to increase performance, loyalty and revenues.

Photo: Recycling Grunge Sign  by Nicolas Raymond is licensed under CC by 2.0

 

The Importance of On-Site Staff to Meetings, Events and Incentive Travel – Part One

JNR has planned and operated thousands of programs throughout our three decades of being in this industry and although hundreds of hours go into planning every aspect of an event, meeting or travel program, we would not have had the unmatched level of success that we have had if it was not for our talented and experienced on-site team. We are committed to creating breathtaking and memorable business meetings, corporate events and incentive trips that best meet our client’s goals and needs. We understand that you can create the perfect company event on paper, but if things go wrong on-site, none of that matters. That is why we are proud to release our three-part series on The Importance of On-Site Staff to Meetings, Events and Incentive Travel.

In Part One, we will cover the basics of why expert on-site staff are needed to ensure flawless execution of any event. In Part Two, we will go into detail about how on-site staff can best be utilized in each aspects of a program. In Part Three, we will go over the qualities to look for in a capable on-site staff member and how JNR meticulously screens for only the best.

Meetings, events and incentive travel programs are all implemented and designed to help companies reach business objectives and must add value to deliver maximum return on investment (ROI). At JNR, we listen to the client and ask the right questions to completely understand your company’s objectives and attain measurable goals. From the start, we work within your budget, reinforce your goals to participants and then conduct a comprehensive post event survey in order to measure ROI, allowing you to invest in continuous improvements for future events. This process relies on thorough planning right from the word “go” and impeccable execution when on the field.

So, how does the JNR on-site team achieve this impeccable execution on-site?

1)    Experience

Professional on-site team members work thousands of hours of events every year. They have seen and overcome it all. They have firsthand experience at managing the most intricate of on-site details, are committed and passionate about their jobs and are thoroughly cross-trained with superb attention to detail.

The experience they gain from every program they work increases their dedication to customer care and builds on their understanding of what participants are looking for in an exceptional program.

Travel Directors add value and directly impact the bottom line for a client by driving efficiencies, managing the budget and being the company’s advocate with the venue, vendors and service providers.

Experienced on-site team members reduce the cost to clients by eliminating the use of inexperienced internal staff and ensuring the entire meeting, event or program goes as planned. Unlike corporate administrative staff, JNR’s on-site team, specializes in executing meeting plans and use their knowledge and experience to keep participants and especially the client happy.

2)    Destination Knowledge

Our on-site professionals go to great lengths to know every aspect of the event which includes advanced preparation for the chosen destination. This preparation allows them to stand out to participants as a visible resource to answer questions and help the program stay on track. They are a critical pillar of knowledge for participants in what can sometimes be an unfamiliar situation.

3)    Early Arrival

There are many elements that need to be organized before participants arrive. This is achieved through the Travel Director(s) early arrival. In the days and hours before participants and even the client arrives, the travel director(s) has many crucial jobs including:

  • Setting up the headquarters office
  • Reviewing the meeting manual
  • Receiving and doing a quality control check of supplies
  • Walk-through of venues, restaurants and other sites

Once these jobs have been completed, it is essential that the onsite team collaborate with all contracted suppliers to make sure expectations for a successful execution are understood. It is then that participants will begin to arrive, blissfully unaware of the background workings that have taken place to achieve the amazing event they are about to experience.

4)    They Seamlessly Work Together

Each member of the on-site team may have different areas of responsibility, but ultimately they work together as a team moving towards the big picture of a flawless event.

Lead Travel Directors are usually assigned to specific areas of responsibility including:

  • VIP Service
  • Rooms
  • Food and Beverage
  • Transportation
  • Meetings
  • Activities
  • Hospitality Desk
  • Amenities

The other members of the on-site team report to the lead Travel Directors for the duration of the event.

Although responsibilities are usually assigned to specific team members, all on-site team members are empowered to jump in whenever they are needed, guaranteeing that every aspect of the program runs smoothly, on time and on budget.

They have real-world experience of industry best practices and can anticipate, plan and react to any issues without missing a beat.

Every organization has important internal and external stakeholders at their meetings, events and travel programs and so it is imperative that the months of impeccable planning turns into a reality when finally operated. Professional on-site teams are an insurance policy for your investment to ensure each meeting, event and travel program runs as smoothly as planned, keeping costs in check and sending participants home happy.

If you would like more information on how JNR can not only plan an amazing event, meeting or travel program for you but also deliver on the execution with our trusted on-site team, please call us at 949.476.2788 or email jnrinfo@jnrcorp.com. Check back next week for Part Two of our series on The Importance of On-Site Staff to Meetings, Events and Incentive Travel where we will expand on how on-site staff can best be utilized in each aspects of an event, meeting or program. Part Three will be released the following week and will explain the qualities to look for when hiring a capable on-site staff member and how JNR meticulously screens for only the best.

 

By JNR Incorporated

Written by Stephanie Thomas with insights from LuAnn Jalet, Chief Operating Officer at JNR.

 

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JNR Incorporated is a results-based, globally recognized leader that specializes in creating custom travel, meeting, event, prepaid card and merchandise programs that motivate, engage and inspire the employees, customers and channel members of our clients. We have over 30 years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies of many diverse industries. Our programs are tailored to fit the specific needs of marketing, sales, management and human resource professionals. The unique solutions we apply are measurable and proven to increase performance, loyalty and revenues.

The 5 Biggest Megatrends in Meetings and Events

Sustainability, technology, and globalization are among the biggest factors shaping the future of meetings and events according to the German Convention Bureau (GCB) “Meetings and Conventions 2030” study that was published last month.

GCB Managing Director Matthias Schultze explained the purpose of the study at the IMEX America Conference in Las Vegas when he stated: “As an innovation leader, we envision this megatrends study helping players in the industry develop a future-oriented strategy that can generate business and economic success.” Anyone involved in the planning or utilization of meetings and events would be wise to listen and learn from this study.

The top five megatrends in meetings and events influencing the growth and progression of the industry according to the GCB are as follows:

  • Technology – Technology unsurprisingly came in as the number one megatrend, with nearly 42 percent of survey respondents deeming it to be very influential in the future of meetings business. New and innovative ways to transfer knowledge and information from one person to another will influence how events are planned and executed. Virtual components will become more prevalent in live events and break down the barriers of distance and time zones. Just because an individual cannot physically be in attendance does not mean they can’t be present via webcam or by other virtual means.
  • Sustainability – Over 26 percent of survey respondents considered sustainability as having a “very strong impact” on the future of meetings. Construction and renovation of venues, transportation, food, and entertainment are the prominent areas where sustainability will affect future decisions and consideration. Further, regionalization of meetings will increase and cause planners to devote more budget to using local suppliers and encouraging local audiences to attend events.
  • Globalization and Internationalization – Globalization will have a major impact on the industry according to nearly 29 percent of those queried. Meetings will be one of the most important forums to address and understand cultural nuances, norms, and preferences. Speaking multiple languages and grasping how a wide variety of cultures behave will be a very strong advantage in the future.
  • Mobility – 26 percent felt that mobility will be vital in the future of meetings and events. It’s more crucial than ever to be transported to and from events quickly, comfortably, and with the least amount of negative impact on our environment. Companies will need to be aware of this when choosing event locations, mode of transportation, and even the medium through which tickets are issued. Meetings and events can be more “green” by using fewer resources such as paper and fuel.
  • Demographic Change – Cited by 18.2% of respondents as a “very strong” megatrend, demographic change of meeting attendees should remain in the front of the minds of all meeting and event planners. The average age of meeting attendees is increasing and cultural diversity is becoming more evident. Food choices, holiday observances, and differing norms will all be important to be aware of due to America’s increased cultural diversity.

While these five megatrends create a more complex situation for meeting and event planners heading into 2014, they also present new and unique opportunities to deliver successful events. Progressive planners are already evaluating how to more effectively execute successful events with these trends in mind and looking for ways to use the trends to their advantage.

Please don’t hesitate to send us an email at jnrinfo@jnrcorp.com or comment below to express your opinion on this topic or ask us a question. We have over thirty years of planning events and meetings, so learning how to adapt to the evolving industry is our forte.

Visit http://www.jnrcorp.com/meetings-and-conferences or http://www.jnrcorp.com today for more information on meeting and event planning to learn how these events can make more your organization more profitable and productive.

Written by Kristopher Hewkin

Stack Your Deck to Always Come up Aces

Life is full of risky decisions.  From the type of cereal you eat every morning to the next car you park in your garage, every choice involves risk.  While a bad cereal can do little more than ruin your day, the wrong car can induce feelings of regret and remorse for years.

Businesses also face these decisions, and success is predicated on the ability to evaluate and select options that afford the least amount of risk.  Particularly in today’s recovering economy, managers must weigh their options carefully and be wary of placing their company in the position of taking on great risk.

One decision that doesn’t require hours of critical thought is whether businesses should motivate and reward their employees, dealers and best customers.  Human capital is an invaluable asset for any business, and cultivating a culture of recognition, rewards, and gratitude is essential to ensure future revenue growth.

Once you understand this rationale, the question then becomes how do I accomplish this?  Gold stars were fun in grade school and pay bumps were always welcome in minimum-wage high school jobs, but seasoned professionals need a little more to feel appreciated and respected…

Go the extra mile by giving noncash incentives such as travel, debit cards, merchandise and promotional items.

There are many firms that offer these services, and selecting one purely based on the lowest price puts you at great risk of turning your positive idea into a negative experience.

When it comes time to make a decision about who to partner with to create your noncash incentive programs, banish the thought of putting your company at risk.  With JNR, we will put your mind at ease by eliminating this risk through the following:

  •  33 Years of Expertise – We don’t make mistakes.  Our programs are simply the best in the business.
  •  Price Guarantees – You know up front what everything will cost.  No hidden costs, no surprises.
  •  Client Satisfaction – Our client list reads like a “Who’s Who” of the Fortune 500, and includes major automotive, construction, technology and healthcare firms.

Tough decisions loaded with risk keep our plates constantly full.  Now you can make an easy choice that won’t keep you up at night: keep your company’s revenues growing by utilizing custom, noncash incentive programs from JNR.

For more information on Travel Incentive Programs; Full-Service Marketing, Advertising and Communications Services; Debit and Reward Cards; Promotional Products and Merchandise, Meetings and Events; or how to take the risk out of running a business… call us at: 949-476-2688, or visit us online at: www.jnrcorp.com.

Will Virtual Meetings Erase Face-to-Face Communication?

During the recession, the meeting and events industry noticed a dramatic slump in attendance at annual conferences and business meetings due to cut budgets and an increase in travel costs. Coincidentally, the advances in technology during this time fueled the growth of meeting virtually, giving people the ability to actively participate in team meetings no matter where they are in the world.

Face-to-face social interaction, and the meeting and events industry began to take a back seat to this impersonal and detached form of communication. But the truth is, no matter what industry we’re in, we’re all in the people business. We’ll only be successful if we really get to know our customers and colleagues.

Today, meeting and event professionals are excited to discover new scientific evidence proving that face-to-face meetings generate more ideas than both video and voice-only meetings.

A recent study conducted by Meetology and the IMEX Group demonstrates that working together face-to-face not only generates more ideas, but also produces higher quality and a greater variety of ideas.

Highlights from the study include:

  • On average, face-to-face pairs generated 30 percent more ideas than virtual pairs.
  • Likewise, in face-to-face conditions, the number of ideas was 50 percent higher than the number generated under voice-only conditions and 70 percent more than under video conditions

These results appear to effect more than just the meetings and events industry. It suggests that if creativity or innovation is the aim for any team or company, then face-to-face collaboration is more efficient and productive. Place your team in the same room, and away from the computer, and you may be more likely to produce a high volume of fresh, new ideas.

Human face-to-face interaction is, and will continue to be, the most effective form of communication. Live meetings deliver the rich, potent experiences that virtual meetings can’t. They deliver motivation along with messaging, and inspiration with information.

For more information on creating successful meetings and events contact us at jnrinfo@jnrcorp.com or visit our website and www.jnrcorp.com

Kelly Woolsey