First 2 years at ConferenceDirect

Just returned from my second Annual Partner Meeting and feeling mighty inspired!

Attending our APM is such a great way to experience what our company is all about.

The networking is just incredible…getting to meet firsthand so many of my hotel and CVB Partners, people that have worked so hard to help provide my clients the best possible solutions for their meetings and conventions. It’s amazing to see how strong our relationships are with our hotel and destination Partners.

Also, there is such a great opportunity to interact with so many of my colleagues, especially the veterans. The level of professionalism, knowledge and willingness to share ideas just seems to make our company really special!

Getting invited to the APM is just part of the rewarding experience of being associated with ConferenceDirect. The exceptional training, the resources, and the services we can provide….are all the ingredients in place for a person to be super successful.

For someone that was in Hotel Management for 30 years, not necessarily being on the front lines in sales and not coming with a rolodex full of clients, I can say that my first two years with ConferenceDirect has been very rewarding.

The business model has allowed me to get back into something I really enjoy… selling. I’ve been able to develop a very loyal list of Clients, generate an ever growing income and building a Team of my own hospitality Professionals. There’s nothing more rewarding than when a client tells you “Great job” or when a Team member lands a huge account. We all celebrate together!

Looking forward to a great future with ConferenceDirect.

Why ConferenceDirect?

As I started to contemplate going back to work after the birth of my son, I knew that I needed to find a job that offered more flexibility than that of a hotel sales position in which I had held for the previous 9 years.  I knew I wanted to stay in the industry that had given me the opportunity to meet and work with so many fascinating people, businesses and associations…yet I also wanted to find the right balance of being available for my family.  ConferenceDirect has turned out to be the best career decision I have ever made.  I am proud to work for a forward thinking company that strives for honesty, integrity and the highest industry standards.  As a Recruiting Manager, I am reaffirmed on a daily basis when hotel and CVB sales people tell me how much they enjoy working with the professionals on our team.

In addition to the working with my clients to negotiate the best locations and packages for their meetings, I strive to help build our company with the best of the best in our industry.  I enjoy educating people about the benefits of working with ConferenceDirect and assisting them to put a plan in place for a successful transition.  To know that I am helping someone possibly achieve a better quality of life and at the same time embark on a very rewarding career, brings me great satisfaction.  I am very confident that ConferenceDirect offers the best tools, training and technology in our space.  Combined with the support of our extremely experienced team, we have found the recipe for success.

For CD, the future is bright.  As we grow our team with the best industry talent, our Account Executives  continue to find ways to stay current by provide cutting edge support to our clients through a highly experienced team of conference managers,  Housing & Registration division, and Industry Insights customer events.   I’m excited to continue working on our LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter presence knowing that will continue to keep us on the front page of the hospitality industry.

ConferenceDirect Annual Meeting – 2011…a great success

We just completed the ConferenceDirect Annual Meeting in Washington, DC and it was a great success.  We had over 200 ConferenceDirect Associates attend along with 600 Industry Partners who wanted to learn more about doing business with ConferenceDirect, meeting our associates and through our tradeshow pick up a lead, booking, etc.

From an internal standpoint the primary goals and objectives for our Annual Meeting are:

Train – Work with our associates on topics and issues most important to their success at ConferenceDirect.   This was achieved through various general session and breakout presentations.  The sessions ranged from contract negotiation sessions,  working effectively in the ConferenceDirect model / best practices to an amazing presentation by the Ritz Carlton Leadership Institute on how we can best serve our customers.  We work hard to put together an agenda that does in fact contribute to the success of our ConferenceDirect associates but equally important help them demonstrate and deliver value to their customer relationships.

Recognize / Motivate – We have our annual awards dinner each year at our meeting.  This year the event was held on Sunday Night of the conference at the beautiful National Museum for Women in the Arts.   The night was great, people we motivated, inspired and most important I am confident the award winners went away feeling recognized and appreciated.   I am also confident those not recognized went away motivated to “take it to the next level” next year.

Network / Relationships - We often say the greatest resource at ConferenceDirect is each other/ the associates.   Our meeting provides the opportunity for associates to catch up with colleagues they have known at CD for years but also new associates that appreciate any tips or advice they may have for them.  It is great to see the ConferenceDirect Associates enjoying each others company through the week.

Product Knowledge / Know the industry – With over 6oo of our partners in for the conference we have a tradeshow that allows us to get to know them and the products they represent better.  We find out about what’s new in the industry, renovations, negotiate further for our customers on outstanding contracts and possible future business.  This forum provides us an amazing opportunity to get to know the industry as much as possible ot help us help our customers.

Reflecting back I am confident all 4 goals and objectives were achieved at our annual conference and our associates went home….tired for sure…..but with plenty momentum and confidence to serve their customers well and achieve great success in 2011.

Brian Richey

Chief Talent Officer / Executive Vice President



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