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

  • Site selection: How architecture and ambiance enhance your event

    I recently had a fascinating discussion with acclaimed interior designer Lucienne Van Langen, owner of Luminary Design in Saskatoon, who hosts an annual gala evening for existing and potential clients. Van Langen is intimately aware of the “feeling” she wants to accomplish for her function. “The venue we chose this year was a reflection of the characteristics of the individuals that make up our design firm and an extension of our luxury, high-end brand. It offered a unique experience in…

  • Unconventional venue contracts still require conventional contract wisdom

    As revealed in my last article, there are a multitude of items that one must consider when “finding the perfect fit” between an event and an unconventional venue. The wide range of factors to be considered (which even at 30-plus items was not exhaustive!) gives credence to the importance of fully understanding the wants and needs of the event, and the capabilities and limitations of the venue, and when compared side by side – being able to discern the best…

  • Unconventional event venues: 31 considerations for finding the perfect fit

    Finding the perfect job…finding the perfect size…finding the perfect mate…finding the perfect home… In almost every avenue of life, we are in search of finding the perfect fit. This too is true in the events industry. As event planners, one of our primary responsibilities is to find the perfect venue. Event venues come in all shapes and sizes, and range from conventional – such as a hotel or conference centre – to unconventional. The opportunities for unconventional event venues are…

  • Venue contracts: A meeting planners’ call to action

    I couldn’t believe my eyes! There, in an email, was the statement that put into words a sentiment that I’ve heard over and over again from meeting planners: “The way I have been brought up in this industry has always been to just reduce the rental and food and beverage minimums, add your concessions, sign and send.” This quote was written by an experienced meeting planner employed by a reputable Canadian organization – in response to an email dialogue we…

  • Food and beverage budgeting: 16 tips for doing more with less

    Every event planner strives to deliver the ultimate participant experience during their events. We live for the thrill of seeing the participants (and our clients or employers) wowed and amazed. However, in these times of economic restraint, we’re being asked to create these experiences on limited or declining budgets. We’re required to improve the bottom line but not sacrifice the participant experience. For many events, food and beverage is a critical component of the participant experience. While we long to…

  • Top four tips for negotiating your event venue contracts

    Venue contracts: Love, lust or run? TLC’s popular show Love, Lust or Run? is based on the premise of everyday people reacting to the featured guest in their preferred (albeit most often quite strange) outfit. People are asked to indicate if they would “love, lust or run” on the guest based on their appearance. I propose that if meeting planners’ reactions to reviewing venue contracts were to be gauged in the same “love, lust or run” approach, most planners’ first…