About the author:

Author: Heather Reid

Heather Reid ARCT MSc, the Founder and CEO of PLANNER PROTECT, has been engaged in the meetings industry since 1994. Beginning in the industry through her work with a national association, to founding her own independent full service event management company in 2000 (Innovative Conferences & Communications), Heather launched Planner Protect in 2014 to focus on serving the meetings industry through her passion for "everything contracts!" Planner Protect provide contract negotiations consulting services, workshops and webinars for meeting planners across Canada, as well as providing education opportunities for entrepreneurs and organizations on hosting and contracting for live events. She is passionate about helping others read between the lines! It is Heather’s desire to continue to grow in this exciting and ever-changing industry, as she is constantly challenged to learn and is inspired by those around her.

Articles by Heather Reid

  • Shutting Up the Noisy Neighbours

    “No interference,” also known as “quiet enjoyment,” is a concept that exists in real estate and in tenant law that means an occupant has the right to be free from significant interference in the use and enjoyment of the occupied property. This means free of noise, distractions, disturbances and interruptions. Now you may be thinking, how does this concept relate to the events industry? The answer is simple — events are temporary tenants in venues! Therefore, the concept of no…

  • Can hotels cancel your concessions? Well, it’s complicated

    Hotel will provide the following concessions if at least 90 per cent of the minimum guestroom revenue is received and at least 100 per cent of the minimum food and beverage revenue is received… Concessions are benefits or value-added services that venues offer in exchange for the event host’s business and fulfilment of their contractual requirements. For event hosts, it feels great to negotiate potentially lucrative concessions as part of an event contract. Complimentary staff rooms, free wi-fi, discount parking…

  • All in the details: What to include in your venue contract’s event description

    By Heather Reid Most venue contracts only capture the basics: the event name, the anticipated number of attendees and the official program dates. Unfortunately for most venue contracts, that’s insufficient. John Foster, a hospitality lawyer and certified hospitality marketing executive, says planners need to include a detailed event description section in their venue contracts that goes beyond the basics to include the particulars. It’s critical toward ensuring that planners, salespeople and venue staff are all on the same page, that…

  • Venue contract wisdom is often woefully insufficient

    By Heather Reid A side-by-side examination of 12 signed and negotiated contracts for booking events into unconventional venues unveiled disturbing discrepancies to me. The “unconventional venue” contracts included the following Canadian locations: cultural centre, city-owned sport facility, entertainment complex, music hall, high-risk recreational facility, heritage facility, aquarium, brewery, two recreational/amusement facilities and museums in three different cities. A wide variety of unconventional venues for sure! Here are a few of the disturbing findings of my side-by-side review: Indemnification Clause: 6…

  • The high cost of combined contract clauses

    An association conference was scheduled for spring 2019 at a Canadian hotel property. The most glaring issue with the association’s venue contract was the fact that it included two clauses related to Food and Beverage (F&B) that, when combined, were detrimental: Sliding Scale and Attrition. The association’s minimum anticipated spend for F&B was $100,000. This was the Sliding Scale for F&B spend: > $100,000.00 F&B: Meeting room rental charge would be waived, offered complimentary $80,000.00 to $99,999.00 F&B: Meeting room…

  • Rights and remedies for event venue performance

    When an event host chooses a venue at which to hold their event, a number of considerations have been factored into the decision (see my earlier post on this topic here). Two of those key considerations include: the published and actual quality of the venue’s physical surroundings; and the venue’s published and actual standards of services or performance. If an event host is prepared to sign a venue contract well in advance of their event dates, it benefits and protects the…

  • Eight components of a high-level emergency plan document for your conference or event

    Mitigation, media and muster points: Discussing emergency plans at your pre-conference event Risk management, security procedures and emergency planning are all top-of-mind with today’s meetings industry professionals. Just like events – pre-conference meetings (aka pre-cons) come in all shapes and sizes. I’ve been at pre-cons with three people and with 20 people. I’ve been at pre-cons with a formal agenda and with no agenda. I’ve been at pre-cons with my client present and on my own. While there is no…

  • Getting noticed: Four tips planners can use for making their event RFP stand out

    Growing up, one of my mom’s adages was “there’s a time and a place for getting noticed!” This may or may not be true – but what I do know for sure is that I want the Request for Proposal (RFP) for my events to stand out to prospective venues every time. Preparing to release an RFP for an upcoming event can be an exciting time, but it can also be wrought with anxiety about how much/what information to include,…

  • Can event venues cancel your contract concessions?

    It feels great to negotiate concessions as part of an event contract. Concessions, by definition, are a contractual agreement where one party provides something of value to the other party in exchange for something else. In the case of the events and meetings industry, one typically sees concessions offered in a venue contract, in recognition of the event host choosing the venue to host its event. Venue contract concessions can be wide-ranging and are prioritized differently for each event. Examples…

  • Is doing more with less in events possible?

    When one does a Google search of the text “doing more with less” it comes up with 55,400,000 results, and when one further refines it to “doing more with less in events” it shows 28,200,000 results! Staggering! With my Google findings in mind, combined with my own experiences with limited event budgets, I’m writing today to offer some creative and logical ways to keep your event’s expenses down, thereby “doing more with less.” It is my opinion – well-seasoned after…