This December we’re excited to shine the spotlight on a team member from the AMA Executive Conference Center in New York City. Tony Adia is a Meetings Manager for one of AMA’s busiest Centers, and has a ‘box of hats’ that he wears. Always on the move, we were happy to get the chance recently to catch up with him for a short chat. Enjoy getting to know a little bit more about Tony, who in his words ‘has many moons of experience’ when it comes to planning meetings in the heart of Manhattan!
AMA: Hi Tony – thanks for taking time to chat today. After many years as part of the AMA New York City Conference Center team we’d love to know how your role as a meeting planner has changed.
TONY: My position as a meeting planner has evolved through the years with AMA. The meetings industry is always changing which makes is one of the reasons I have so much experience. After so many years I feel like I’m more than a ‘just a meeting planner.’ From budgeting, to booking and managing internal seminar programs to booking and managing our external meetings now – it’s always changing and there’s always something happening.
AMA: What is most rewarding about what you do in planning meetings?
TONY: When I see the clients with a satisfied look on their face, they accomplished what they came to do. Our job really is to provide the ‘stage’ for them so that when they show up they don’t have to worry about the facility…they can concentrate on their program, not the technical part of it, or the temperature, or the lighting, etc. If I see them doing this, then I’m happy. At the end they don’t have to tell me because I know the event went well. I can go home satisfied and excited to work with the next group.
AMA: What do you think makes the AMA New York Conference Center different from other meeting venues in NYC?
TONY: At the New York Center there are a team of us that do meeting sales. Before we sold space we were meeting planners, and we still are. The meeting planners book WITH meeting planners. We help them manage their meeting from beginning to end so they benefit from our experience. Also our approach to service is hands-on – everyone in the department is involved. From the moment the client comes off the elevator, to the person at the front desk, to the AV techs, to the catering person, we’re an integrated team. Also, the value of what a client gets when booking our Executive Center can’t be touched – our packages are hands down the best value in Times Square.
AMA: When not working on successful meetings in the Center, what do you like to do with your free time?
TONY: I love the outdoors! I’m usually biking, hiking, fishing or playing tennis. The older I get the more I love it!
AMA: Is there a philosophy that you live or work by?
TONY: My first boss once told me this, “You work to live…not live to work.” As you get older life gets more complicated so remain focused.
AMA: It’s been great chatting with you today! Is there anything you’d like to share that we haven’t asked?
TONY: Well, we are excited about some new projects that are finally happening in the New York Center for 2017. We are adding some new meeting rooms, updating the original rooms for a fresh look, new AV, lighting, etc. The work is still in progress including our website. Many Planners don’t know that we’re one of the best kept secrets in Times Square. We are a bustling conference center. Our best sales people are the happy customers that tell their friends in the industry!