By Heather Seasholtz, CMP
PCMA launched a resource for information about the Coronavirus, a virus that is worse than SARS which occurred approximately 20 years ago, and what you need to know as a business event’s professional.
Clients and members will look to you and your organization to be proactive in messaging and know that you are watching the situation. Take a look at your meeting calendar, if you or a client has programs going to China and/or affected countries within the next six months, now is the time to act. Work through your options of canceling, postponing or knowing the risks for holding the meeting.
If you have a significant number of attendees from any of the impacted countries in Asia, please be sure you know and understand the Force Majeure, Cancellation and Attrition language in your hotel/venue contract. You may need to have conversations with your venue on lowering your room block or F/B minimum due to the travel restrictions of those attendees getting out of their country. Having those conversations now will help you when the meeting happens.
Further, understand what is and is not covered by your client’s insurance. Do you have event insurance that covers these situations? Contact your insurance broker immediately to understand your options.
Regarding public statements, it’s important to acknowledge that you are watching and paying attention to the situation. This will go a long want to ensure your members and attendees know you are looking out for their safety.