Is that meeting necessary? It's a question a majority of planners are hearing from higher-ups. In fact, 76 percent of 132 respondents to a recent M&C Research poll have been pressed to defend a meeting or event scheduled to take place this year or in 2010. Conferences and trade shows have been most at risk, with 53 percent of respondents needing to justify keeping them on the calendar, followed by training programs (36 percent) and sales meetings (27 percent).
Many have been successful in defending their programs, with 21 percent reporting full victories and 61 percent reporting that they've saved some meetings from being cut, but not all.
Planners wisely embrace the concept of proving the value of their events, with just 5 percent failing to do so, even by casual methods. Similarly, 75 percent document the value they bring to their organizations, citing attendee satisfaction surveys (67 percent), savings reports (56 percent) and other measures.
A substantial 44 percent have planned virtual meetings that replaced face-to-face events, while 47 percent have planned virtual meetings or events that were new or add-ons to existing in-person gatherings.