As we move into the second quarter of 2007, all of us — meeting planners and suppliers — are facing many challenges. Some of the challenges are anticipated and planned, but new ones seem to be cropping up every day. The “squeaky wheel” vies for our undivided attention, and all the while, the numerous deadlines loom ever closer.

Recently, while experiencing the urgency of intense details and deadlines, an inner voice reminded me: “Don't forget the mission.” Every organization and every meeting has a mission statement — either implied or documented. When the numerous tasks and urgent work lists seem to be overwhelming, perhaps it is time for a reality check.

With whom can I share all these responsibilities? Where can I find the resources to assist me in performing efficiently? Who can help me to keep focused on the mission? Other people usually are available and willing to become a part of making the meeting and/or function the success that it deserves to be. A committee or an energized and qualified assistant might be willing to share your workload and responsibilities.

Quality relationships come to the forefront as we work together to accomplish the mission and produce a meeting that will be long remembered by our attendees as “one of the best ever.”

Thanks to all of you who have shared your time and talents in helping me reach for the best and most productive way to “focus on the mission.”
T.M. Jackson