September 11 is sure to be a day of remembrance wherever you might be — and for many of our readers, that wherever will include being at meetings.
Kelly Newell, event manager for the Pacific Northwest Transportation Technology Expo, is moving forward with plans for this year's event in Moses Lake, Wash. “This program was held September 11 and 12 last year, and setup day was the 11th. Needless to say, it was an emotional time for all the vendors and attendees. This year, opening day of the Expo is September 11. We are planning a moment of silence at the start of the program, and we're also going to have a memorial set up to honor those killed working on road construction projects.”
Tony Korody, president of FEP Inc., a planning firm in Santa Monica, Calif., knows just what he'd suggest. “I'd have a flag on stage at half-staff, and I'd have the CEO or whoever's conducting the meeting lead a moment of silence. Also, I'd pipe in live to the meeting whatever was being done on the television networks to honor the day, if it was being done at the same time as the meeting.”
Jeff Fife, business developer for Waynesburg, Va.-based RentQuick.com, an audiovisual equipment vendor, expects that most companies will memorialize the day at their meetings and events. “In my view, on that day we can recognize the terrible losses we had on September 11, 2001, and at the same time celebrate that we're back doing business on September 11, 2002.”
At the same time, it will be important to take added security precautions. “My guess is that there will have to be heightened levels of security on that date,” says Rick Werth, president of Event & Meeting Security Services, Franklin, Tenn. His Web site, www.eventsecurity.com>, has posted special tips on how to prepare for a September 11, 2002, meeting. “If a client wants to meet on that date, then they need to start today, right now, with a threat assessment and preparations.”