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When selecting the most appropriate MICE venue for a specific type of MICE group the need to detail the MICE requirements in line with the selected venue could make the difference between success or failure of the undertaking.
Too often the venue is selected first without taking cognisance of the actual needs of the gathering. It is realised that at times a planner is required to book a preferred venue well-in-advance before the programme content has even commenced. However it makes limited sense to have a heavy discussion corporate think tank of 25 executives in a venue that is geared for thousands at any given time especially if the think tank is taking place in tandem with a major capacity exhibition. Similarly a conference of 300 with an exhibition along-side – within a venue that has exhibition facilities a distance from the actual conference space is likely to ensure dissatisfaction amongst the various stake-holders.
Yet time and again the MICE industry witnesses a special deal usually between the venue and the nominated association planning committee in which the main objectives are lost in the midst of bottom-line gain for the association. Short term gain with long-term repercussions is rarely realised as invariably a different planning committee has to bear the brunt of the previous years logistical short-sightedness.
A call from MICE planners for a listing of fit-for-purpose venues is under investigation at this time.
In Gauteng alone there are over 2000 MICE venues some dedicated to ensuring that the requirements of the end-user are upper-most, while the majority have limited bench-marking as to the best uses of the various spaces within the MICE venue.
The MICE industry is becoming increasingly aware of the importance of return on investment (ROI) with real tangible outcomes from the MICE gathering. It means that 2013 could indeed herald a new era in MICE venues that focus on horses for courses.

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