Hello? Hello? Echo? Echo?

Hello?  Anyone home? 

This has been the slowest month in fifty one months in business.  There have been numerous days over the course of the last four years and change where I’ve had more leads in one day than I’ve had in the last thirty. 

Notice to suppliers.  I’m not ignoring you.  It’s slow right now for a number of reasons.  For one, it always slows down to some extent in the summer.  Secondly, I’ve been on vacation and I adequately warned all my clients that I’d have been relatively inaccessible for much of this month.  But thirdly, and most poignantly – not sure who’s noticed – but the government has pretty much gone out of business!Who would have thought when I focused my efforts and energies on the government, the most stable of all markets, the market who bailed out all the other markets in the eyes of hotels when the economy began to tank, that I’d soon be searching for all my corporate accounts when the government went dark! 

The truth is, government agencies are hard pressed to spend any more of their FY ’11 dollars when in previous years they’d be racing to make sure they didn’t have a surplus at the end of the fiscal year.  This time, fiscal prudence is likely being rewarded and possibly carried over to FY ’12.  Thus there isn’t the same summer buzz for agencies looking to spend all of their money.  Additionally, even for those trip and conferences deemed mandatory, agencies are looking critically at those who must travel and cutting those whose travel would have been nice.  Groups are being cut in half or even thirds and stays are getting shorter. 

This isn’t a permanent trend but it’s going to last longer than it has in previous years.  Many of these trips and conferences are still necessary and will likely need to simply be booked in a shorter span of time.  It could mean for a much busier end of 3rd quarter and 4th quarter than we’ve seen in recent years. 

It better mean that.  I hope it means that.

Hello?  Anyone home?

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