You have to hand it to meeting planners. They’re eternal optimists, always seeing the glass as half full, always viewing the world through rose-coloured glasses. In our Market Report, that translates to predictions—expectations, really—that, more often than not, exceed marketplace reality.
Yet this year appears to be different. Planners’ forecasts for 2012 have been tempered by reality and brought back to earth, due, no doubt, to the brutal economic downturn of the last three-plus years.
This year, planners’ expectations don’t exceed reality, but reflect it, as a number of bellwether survey results stand out: Scaled-back meeting-spend increases. Decreases in the number and size of meetings, and room nights. Taken together, these numbers tell the story of an industry that has survived some rough waters and is chastened, but wiser for it.
But make no mistake. By any measure, our industry is strong. And if anything, our respondents’ predictions for growth—modest, yes, but growth nonetheless—reflect a stable industry and align with such key economic indicators as the Canadian inflation rate, which stands at around 2.3 per cent.
We credit the more realistic 2012 predictions to an industry that is coming of age in a number of exciting ways. As a young, educated planner base enters the industry, it raises the professionalism of the industry as a whole, so an increasing number of its members operate from a position of heightened awareness. And it’s that elevated level of awareness that shapes the general outlook and, consequently, the numbers found in our survey.
Hand in hand with that professionalism are the opinions of industry members who, like M+IT, care deeply about our industry and want to take it to the next level. These seasoned thought leaders are constantly proposing ways in which we, as an industry, need to improve our business practices so they truly become best practices.
Our industry is operating from a position of stability. Great things will come.
For a comprehensive summary of this year’s Market Report numbers, click on the below link…
As a special component to M+IT’s annual Market Report survey, we ask readers’ to vote for their favourite venues, destinations and meetings industry suppliers. To view M+IT readers’ favourite picks for 2012, click on the below link…