Official Newsletter of The Association for Convention Operations Management

May 2010


June 2010

Set the Standards
Speaker: Linda Byars Swindling, JD, CSP

July 2010

Social Media 101: How Do I Get Started

August 19, 2010

What CSMs Need to Know About Contracts

September 16, 2010
National Celebrate Services Day

Meeting Planner Panel: What Creative Ideas Services Has Done for Them in the Past

October 21, 2010
Social Media for Attendance Building

November 18, 2010

Managing Your Boss

Networking Zone

• National Celebrate Services - Have You Started the Local Buzz?


What CSMs are Talking About

• Tips and Suggestions from Fellow ACOMers on How to Provide Great Service

On the Move
ACOM Leadership is On the Move to Atlantic City
Elizabeth Roe Joins the ACOM Team

What's New

• ACOM to Host Professional Speaker During June Webinar

Benefitting You
• Do You Want to Share the Benefits of ACOM Membership with Your Colleagues?

Conference Corner
Save the Date - 2011 Annual Conference


Tips of the Trade
Learning the Green Vocabulary

Please send article suggestions to

Networking Zone
National Celebrate Services – Have You Started the Local Buzz?

National Celebrate Services Day - Will Your City Be On The Map?
Celebrating the Art of Convention Services
September 16, 2010

Have you started the local buzz around your city?

ACOM is spearheading a nationwide day to focus in on this vital aspect of our industry. It will allow local services communities to get together for networking and membership recruitment. We've labeled it National Celebrate Services Day and we want you to participate. First, we need you to put a star next to the day and date of Thursday, September 16th on your calendar. ACOM will be distributing more information soon to help you with getting a local event organized. But in the meantime, we want to pull together CSMs from around North America to join together, in cities nationwide, and Celebrate Services!

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What CSMs Are Talking About
Tips and Suggestions from Fellow ACOMers on How to Provide Great Service

Suggestions from Marketing Committee and Board Members

• I really learned a lot from the Eat Your Frogs session the ACOM Annual Conference in January, so all of my major event files (and some of my minor onesJ) contain a FROG section. This keeps me on target with those tricky/potentially unpleasant/challenging event issues that we tend to move around on our desk all day (week) long. I make them the first items I tackle each day.

• I have a wall calendar with all my incoming groups as well as all the major league games or other major city events that might affect a conference that I can quickly refer to. I’m the first one in the store to buy the next year’s calendar and very surprised that they don’t come out earlier than they do! I also keep in my “site” binder a copy of all incoming conventions, major events and anything pertinent to the city handy to refer to if needed.

• I use Outlook follow-up. When I send an email out, I put it in a follow-up to help me remember that it may be an outstanding item that needs attention and if I have not heard from the recipient by the due date, I can then follow-up with that individual.

• I keep a journal, for all my larger conventions, where I date and indicate what I did on that particular date to keep track of all of the little details, who I talked to, what I did for a specific convention related project. This also helps me from year to year make sure I’m not missing anything little which could turn into something big!

• A tip for remembering names is to repeat the persons’ name three times while speaking with them.
- Hi, Melanie! It’s nice to meet you.
- So, Melanie, you work for CHCIC
- Melanie, it is such a pleasure to meet you

• One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in this position is to honestly “never say no.” If there is any way possible that I can do what the client asks, I do it. Sometimes I end up spending more money or more time, but the result is typically worth it. It makes folks feel like I’ve really gone the extra mile. If there is no way I can do what they have asked, then I find a solution that I can do and offer that instead. Instead of “no”, I say “What I can do is…” or “The service that I can offer is…”

• The biggest complaint I get from planners about other CVBs is lack of response or a slow response time. The rule in our office is to respond no later than 24 hours, even if you don’t have the answers, respond and acknowledge the request as soon as possible.

• When I receive an e-mail from a client, I color code them so I can easily find them. For instance, NRPA is YELLOW, SCUP is GREEN. When I have an e-mail I need to follow-up on ASAP, I categorize that as RED. I can sort my categories anytime through Outlook and see what I need to do or read through an entire groups e-mails to find the one I need to reference. I’ve tried other systems and this seems to work well for me. Especially when I can see my RED , which I don’t remove until I complete the task. Once a group is over, I can easily delete their color e-mails and assign their color to an upcoming group.

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On the Move

- ACOM Leadership is On the Move to Atlantic City
- Elizabeth Roe Joins the ACOM Team

This year the ACOM Board of Directors and some Past Presidents are heading to Atlantic City for a special one-day planning meeting. The goal of the meeting is to review ACOM’s current benefits and continuing education offerings—and brainstorm ideas for further development, as well as take a closer look at membership recruitment. Your Board is at work for you! We anticipate a great day of idea-sharing, with a 24-month plan to be in place by day’s end. More will be reported following the meeting.

We are pleased to announce that the ACOM Headquarters team has been expanded. Elizabeth Roe has joined the team as Membership Coordinator. She will be responsible for general member communications, answering the ACOM phone line, database management and the continuing education registration process. Elizabeth rounds out the ACOM team—Lynn McCullough, Executive Director, Diane Galante, Manager of Member Services, Kaitlin Friedman, PR Manager and Meghan Higgins, PR Coordinator.

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What's New
ACOM to Host Professional Speaker During June Webinar

Professional speaker, Linda Swindling, JD, CSP, will be the presenter of ACOM’s upcoming Webinar, Set the Standard, on June 17 at 1:00pm ET.

Set the Standard
Learn how to:

• Motivate, coach and effectively discipline employees
• Understand the "alphabet soup" of employment laws
• Explore the ways to avoid complaints and lawsuits
• Increase awareness and stop potentially harassing behavior
• Recognize potential liability
• Handle any employment situation from hiring to firing

More about our Presenter
Linda Swindling, JD, CSP, has more than 2,000 hours as a CEO advisor and facilitator. She understands how decision makers think, examines the problems they face and helps professionals both problem-solve and create long-term strategies. During 10 years as an attorney, she learned how business owners thought by running her own law practice and leading a number of clients through the complexities of corporate and employment law. A media expert and the creator of the popular Passports to Success book series, Linda combines the lessons she learned in the courtroom and the board room to help you thrive no matter the challenge. Author of Get What You Want and co-author of Impact Negotiation, she is called “one of the country's top experts on communications” by the Network for Executive Women and “an expert on bargaining” by American Way magazine. She is the 2009-2010 president of the National Speakers Association-North Texas. Linda will help you Journey On to your success.

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Benefitting You
Do You Want to Share the Benefits of ACOM Membership with Your Colleagues?

Do you want to share the benefits of ACOM membership with your fellow colleagues?
Did you know that if more than one employee from your same company signs up for membership, they receive a discounted membership rate for the first year of their membership?

Take advantage of the Additional Active Membership type with ACOM by signing up more than one person from your company. As an Additional Active Member, they will still receive FULL membership benefits all for one low cost of $120 for the first year.

Pass the message along and let your colleagues know all about the great benefits they are missing out on by not having an ACOM Membership.

• Discounted registration to attend the Annual Conference

• Comprehensive monthly and quarterly newsletter, At-A-Glance and ACOMmodate, includes industry news, networking ideas, association news and articles of professional interest or pertaining to operations issues.

• Monthly Webinars with topics of unique interest to CSMs.

• Member Only access to the website including a full directory of all ACOM members, access to past newsletters and an article archive sorted by topic, a presentation archive from past conferences and posting of recorded Webinars that you can watch at the convenience of your own desk.

• NETWORKING! Learn from your peers…through ongoing in-person interaction. ACOM provides a forum for you to inquire or share with fellow members about industry-related issues. ACOM is setting up the first National Celebrate Services Day on September 16 to help bring your CS industry peers together locally.

To sign up for membership, visit the ACOM Website. Don’t forget to select Additional Active, if there is more than one person from your company is a member of ACOM.

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Conference Corner
Save the Date - 2011 Annual Conference


Save the Date!

Annual Conference
Westin Casuarina
Las Vegas, Nevada
January 7-9, 2011

ACOM's Conference Committee, led by Sharon Gronowski, CMP, Positively Cleveland, is Hitting the Jackpot with Convention Services, and are putting together a great educational and networking program just for YOU!

Once again, ACOM has partnered with the Conference Hotel to get you a low rate on sleeping rooms. Reserve your sleeping room by August 31 and receive a reduced rate of $179! January is a busy month in Las Vegas, with the large Consumer Electronics Show (CES) taking place over the same dates as the ACOM Conference. Be sure to reserve your sleeping room early to ensure your stay at the ACOM Conference Hotel - the Westin Casuarina! To make reservations, please call (866) 837-4215.

As a reminder, the Summer Education Conference is "under construction" this year. Make sure you direct those Summer Conference dollars to the 2011 Annual Conference in Las Vegas!

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Tips of the Trade
Helpful tools for the services profession

Clean-energy entrepreneurs come from a wide range of business and scientific backgrounds, each with its own set of terms, phrases and concepts. Similarly, new clean-energy regulatory schemes borrow from a range of existing regulatory systems, inheriting a lexicon from each. From this hodgepodge of words and ideas, a new vocabulary is emerging. Understanding this vocabulary is key successfully market their products and services to the growing number of consumers purchasing environmentally friendly products.

This Glossary of Terms will help you become more familiar with the basic terms and concepts of the green economy. It will help to communicate effectively about social and environmental impacts. A firm understanding of these terms will help you to prepare more compelling business plans and presentations, improving your chances of securing funding and endorsements for green business proposals. Because this remains an emerging marketplace, some definitions are still evolving or constant.

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