Sodexo Conferencing Blog

Drool Worthy Meeting Meals

Mandy Volpe - Tuesday, February 28, 2017
You must take a look at the recent video from High Country Conference Center. They offer Sodexo quality food and beverage service for their meetings. Located in Northern Arizona, their conference center offers lunch buffets that include hot, cold, and sweet options for your tasting pleasure. Here is a link to the video for you to enjoy: HCCC Video.

Meeting Planner Tips for Site Visits

Mandy Volpe - Monday, February 27, 2017

We want your meeting to be a success. We partner with you to provide site inspections before your big meeting. Here are a few tips for optimizing your time while at the property.

Pay attention to the details

What will your attendees experience? The ease of parking, the access to Wi-Fi, the presentation of the food and beverage are all key elements to pay special attention to during your site visit.

Event Set-Up

What does it really take to get your meeting set up at the facility? Find out how much time you have before and after your meeting for set-up and break down. Are there additional charges? Will the facilities close after a certain hour? These are all great question to consider asking your site’s professional team during your visit.

Linger a Little Longer

While on your site visit, take time to sit in the lobby and watch the interactions of the staff. Take in the staff’s attitudes towards other customers, especially ones who are currently in house for a meeting. Evaluate their attention to detail, their speediness in responding to requests, and their overall satisfaction on the job.

Best of luck with your site evaluation.

Industry Events at Sodexo Properties

Mandy Volpe - Monday, February 20, 2017
Chase Center on the Riverfront just completed a week of hosting double header industry association events. Their week started off with the MPI Education Institute and then finished with the IACC Americas Chapter Copper Skillet Chef Cook-off Competition. Both events were a huge success due to the superior service of the staff and event teams involved. It is always a pleasure to welcome industry colleagues to this Sodexo Property with hospitality and attention to detail that sets the venue apart in the venue space.

3 Reasons to Love Sodexo Conferencing

Mandy Volpe - Tuesday, February 14, 2017
Three reasons to love Sodexo Conferencing properties:

Commitment to Superior Service
With over 20 years in the event industry, our team has the number one priority of making sure your guests are well taken care of during their meeting. We will proactively work with you to provide a one-stop-shop experience in order to provide unparalleled service.

IACC Standards
From technology to seating, our facilities are equipped to take your meeting to the next level. Businesses love Sodexo Conferencing properties for their ability to pair design and sustainability for the best meeting environments possible.

Dedicated Partners
Our team of skilled professionals want to partner with you to assess and deliver on your event needs. Each property will work with the meeting planners to ensure event elements are well thought out for a flawless guest experience.

3 Corporate Event Trends

Mandy Volpe - Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Staying on top of trends is crucial in the meeting world. You want to ensure that you are engaging attendees, especially the millennials that are becoming more present in the meeting arena these days. Here are a few ideas to incorporate to transform your event this year.

Lounges

Create gathering spaces for attendees to network in between sessions. Instead of high top cocktail tables, opt for plush couches with low coffee tables. The relaxed setting will provide a comfortable retreat for attendees to strike up conversations with new colleagues. The lounges are also great spaces for attendees to spread out their belongs in between sessions to review meeting notes before launching into the next session.

Spicy Cuisine

Consider adding Siracha to your menu for the event. Siracha brings a heat of flavor and creates a punch for any catered meal. Pair the Siracha flavors with international cuisine or simply include as a dipping sauce for the main course. This addition will certainly please the meeting attendees who pride themselves on being "foodies".

Interactive Guest Experiences

Allow your exhibitors to create guest experiences beyond the typical tradeshow booth. Sponsors can opt to have magicians greeting attendees at the front door with business cards intermixed with playing cards. The idea is to create memorable moments through interactive experiences. This will result in higher satisfaction ratings for sponsors for their return on investment in your meeting.

Visioneering the Meeting Room

Mandy Volpe - Monday, January 30, 2017

On February 15, 2017, Chase Center on the Riverfront will feature a breakout during the Education Institute. One of our featured breakouts at the upcoming Education Institute, ”Visioneering the Meeting Room of the Future” is sure to be an interesting and unique session led by Mark Cooper, Chief Executive Officer of IACC.  Join Mark and learn how different meeting rooms support learning outcomes and help maximize meeting ROI. Attendees will also develop a better understanding of how technology can help build multi-way communication in the room and for virtual participants, and how to consider different venue types and non-traditional room layouts to help foster connections between and among delegates.

Today, planners must think about creating meeting environments that are comfortable and functional. Gone are the days of boring theater seating using uncomfortable banquet chairs. Attendees expect a higher standard to help foster creativity and learning. Upgraded meeting furnishings such as CORT’s Meeting Chairs, PRO executive chair or Roma seating collection are good examples of the type of stylish modern seating that can be mixed together to set a room for maximum engagement.” –Kevin Dana, Director of Marketing and Product Development for CORT Tradeshow and Event Furnishings

Ready to sign up for this exciting event? Register here.

IACC Coooking Competition

Mandy Volpe - Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Recently the IACC Copper Skillet Competition was held at the NAV Centre in Cornwall, Canada. Here is a group photo prior to the IACC Canadian Chefs Competition including esteemed judges Chef Michael Smith, Javier Alarco and Peter Hum. Well done to all of the outstanding chefs who competed in the event. The Nav Centre's own Jessica Neville was one of the winners.

Sodexo Conferencing Weddings

Mandy Volpe - Thursday, January 19, 2017
Have you found yourself engaged with a new shiny rock on your left hand? Congratulations! We have many Sodexo Conferencing properties that would serve as the perfect backdrop for your wedding. From outdoor gardens to indoor ballrooms, we can make your wedding day dreams come true. Contact a property near you, today, to get started with your event planning.

Balloons as Decor

Mandy Volpe - Saturday, December 31, 2016
Balloons are making a huge statement in 2017 for events. While balloons can be associated with children's parties, elegant uses of latex and helium balloons are popping up everywhere. Here are a few ideas for incorporating this trend, with a twist, into your next event:

Branding

Use balloons as an extension of your brand. Have balloons imprinted win your logo so that branding is visible everywhere in the room. Balloons with logos can also be used as backdrops when layered in rows.

Arches

Balloon arches are not the newest trend, but many event planners have been putting a twist on this old standby. Mix in large balloons with smaller balloons for a variety of interest. Also for arches, instead of doing a traditional horse-shoe shape, have your balloon arch cascade across an entry way and incorporate fresh flowers. The contrast between the cascading balloons and the flowers will leave your guests inspired with a fresh spin on event decor.


Table Decor

While balloon clusters on a table can be seen as simple, branch out with your balloons by creating table runners. Use balloons in varying miniature sizes and attach them across the table as a runner. This works well on long tables so that the balloons draw your eye across the room.

 


What other ideas do you have for using balloons for events?

3 Tips for Creating Event Surveys

Mandy Volpe - Friday, December 30, 2016
How will you gain feedback from your event attendees regarding the success of your event? We wanted to provide you with a few ideas regarding surveys so that you can accurately take the temperature of the overall satisfaction of your guests.

Distribution
Consider how often you will distribute a survey. Maybe you will create a short survey to hand out after each session. These short surveys could cover the overall satisfaction of the content, length, and speaker. Make sure these short surveys are taken up at the end of the session so that you have immediate feedback for your event team as well as the speaker.  Another option for distribution would be to send a survey electronically at the end of the meeting. After the meeting is over, email a quick thank you and include the link to a survey. The easier it is to find your survey, the more likely that it will be filled out.

Reward
Incentivize your attendees to take your survey by providing a gift card entry or discount to next years meeting. Include a space on your survey for your attendees to fill out their name and email so that you can easily contact the winner.

Open Ended Answers
Ask questions that have space for comments. Rating a meeting element on a scale of 1 to 5 can be helpful for future planning, but the real results come from comments. Allow your attendees to rate the question but also leave a space or box for them to provide comments on ways to improve in the future.

Keep in mind that people love to know that their opinions are heard and valued. Once you review the survey results, if you implement any suggestions, make it known at the next event that improvements have been made as a result of the surveys that were filled out.