It's hard sometimes, in the current economy, not to be greedy about getting new clients or customers. Especially for Independent Meeting Planners. When we see an opportunity for a new gig, we guard that secret like a woman guards a rose on The Bachelor. You couldn't pry that flower from her cold, dead hands.
But did you know there's a drawback to that? As an Indie Planner, you have limited staff, resources and time. You never know when you will need help, for either a current or future client.
I used to guard my work pretty carefully. I still do, to a certain extent. But when I went through a dry spell, it was my competition, other Indie Planners, who helped me make it to the next sunny day.
In some cases, they would pass along a client they simply didn't have the time and staff to manage. Other times, they merely needed help on site with registration or overseeing F&B and audio-visual. Sometimes it might be for one event for one day or on site for an entire meeting over several days. In either case, I was glad for the work and the other Indie Planner was glad for my help and experience.
In addition, by nurturing those relationships, one day you could be on the other end and some competitor might be coming to you for help. At a recent meeting, when we had the need for six registrars, it was another local Indie Planner that saved the day. She was able to provide the extra staffing and now we both have another resource.
On top of that, working with other experienced planners really helps make your event run smoothly. That's the best argument yet for working with your competition.