Around Professional Events and Consulting

Here at Professional Events and Consulting (PEC), we typically have a wide variety of meetings, events, and happenings going on in any given month. To capture a few of our favorite moments both around the office, as well as on-site at events, we’ve taken to Instagram for instant memory making. Whether it’s an exciting behind-the-scenes shot from an event, or something interesting happening inside our office, we’re documenting our happenings along the way. Today we’re sharing a few of our favorite Instagram pictures from the past few months. Enjoy!

Professional Events and Consulting 3Professional Events and Consulting 2

To follow along with more of Professional Events and Consulting’s updates, follow us on Instagram at @pecpros!

Las Vegas FAM Tour

When people hear Vegas, they probably think of the usual: drinking, gambling, and people snapping cards in your face at every turn. It is, after all, the city that never sleeps. With all the partying, money lost and gained, and lack of sleep you would think its most popular slogan “What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas” would benefit most. At Professional Events and Consulting, we found our time to be quite the opposite…

In September, an associate and I were given the opportunity to fly out to Vegas for a FAM tour hosted by Caesars Entertainment. We were wined, dined and even walked a red carpet when we arrived. In order for Caesars Entertainment to showcase the best they have to offer, we stayed in Paris Hotel and Planet Hollywood, attended social events, and ate 4-course meals on property. If I leave it at that, it sure sounds like we had the trip of a lifetime. We did, but there is no doubt this was a work trip. We left Wisconsin knowing we were given a great opportunity to form otherwise unlikely relationships and see buildings that we may only otherwise see on Google.

We viewed the FAM tour as a chance to go to a city we were unfamiliar with to see all that it has to offer, especially in working with companies looking to host conferences and conventions there. This trip was just one of many experience PEC has had that is helping us build our Site Selection knowledge and expertise. After all, seeing the space and actually experiencing the space, helps sell the space!

Shortly after our return we received an RFP for a large event in Las Vegas. Our new knowledge of the city immediately allowed us to eliminate spaces we knew could not accommodate the group. Entertainment companies, linen providers and décor companies were still in the front of our minds. When we had questions, we reached out to our newly formed contacts.

The knowledge gained after spending four days in Vegas was priceless.  With that said, there will be plenty more FAM tours in PEC’s future.

PEC Employee Spotlight: Meet Eileen

Each month, we like to recognize and highlight an internal employee on our blog. PEC wants you to know the names and faces behind our walls, since these are the people that work daily for the betterment of our services for our clients. In today’s PEC Employee Spotlight you’ll meet Eileen.

Name: Eileen Weins
Position: Winter Fest + Event Coordinator

What is your favorite hobby outside of work?

I enjoy the creative craft projects that my volunteer work brings me, or even enjoy house improvement projects! This week, we picked out tile and a vanity for the half bath – I just love the destruction and re-construction phases of a project. My husband and I are in a new chapter of our lives, so we are rediscovering our interests in being empty nesters. We’re embracing new hobbies!

What point in the event planning process is your favorite?

I enjoy creating the concepts for the event, and then making all the connections to make the idea come to life. I also like working through the details of the creative process. Secondly, I love the day-of installation at the event; I get a thrill out of watching the design elements and project unfold as it all comes together.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? (Given that your family would be there too)

On a lake and in an up-north cabin. There would be lunches on a pontoon boat, sunsets, sunrises over the lake, quite fishing days, canoeing to paddle around the lake during quiet mornings, and the smell of firewood at the campsite. (But in the winter – somewhere warm!)

What cooking or baking dish are you known for?

Creatively making dishes with no sugar, as my family is fructose intolerant. I have creatively made desserts and main dishes that contain no natural or refined sugar! (editor’s note: that is VERY impressive!)

If you weren’t working in events, what would you be doing?

Coaching younger kids. You would find me wearing a t-shirt and shorts in a gym!

Name one interesting fact about yourself!

I am a twin! Also, my left side of the brain works overtime and I believe I have an extra sensitivity to people’s likes, interests, and differences.

Team Building Activities: Best Of

Planning team building activities is an important first step in developing a strong, efficient and effective team.  But making sure it’s the right experience for your team is imperative.  While some team building experiences are meant to simply build morale, others are designed to foster communication, reinforce company values, build trust or even address conflict resolution.

There are as many reasons why we need team building activities as there are activities.  And they range anywhere from 3-5 minute activities to 2-3 day off-site corporate retreats.  Understanding the need, developing a plan and analyzing the results are keys to any successful team building experience.

Listed below are a few creative suggestions taken from multiple sources that we feel are unique, yet effective team building exercises.

Marvel”ous” Comic Book Design

Teams create comic books highlighting their individual superpowers and how they will use them to save the day and overcome some of the challenges facing their company.  Spirits soar as high as a superhero during the comic book presentation held at the end of the activity. (

Team Improv

Through a series of exciting improvisational games, exercises and challenges, you will harness the ability to be spontaneously creative without any limitation.

The key is working together on the spot, under severe pressures with unknown resources in order to accomplish your goal. (

Icing on the Cake

Teams may think this event is a piece of cake, but there’s a lot to do if they want to top all other teams! Teams donned in chef’s hats and aprons must decorate a cake and whip up a presentation that’s better than all others, or they’ll get creamed! (

Bike Building Workshop

Working together as a team you will earn the pieces of a brand new bike and the tools to build it. Against impossible odds and immense time pressure, you will build a bike for your “customer”, an underprivileged child in the community.  This is truly a heartwarming team building event with a philanthropic spin. (

One World, One Team

This is an indoor team building activity that focuses on local action with a global reach as teams work together to create, produce and pack unique ‘gift boxes’ for distribution to children in need – it’s an event that not only helps your team, but literally changes the lives of children in developing countries around the world. (

Adventure Weekend

The Adventure Weekend provides a variety of activities through which team members can grow and learn – each day is packed with adventure sports opportunities and each challenge requires significant commitment from the members of the group.  Individuals learn to test their limits, trust their team and build team bonds. (

Working Girls and Guys: Best Smartphone Apps

Graduation and signing with PEC for my first full-time job brought on a whole new identity for PEC Event Coordinator Samantha Dobrzynski. It was time to trade in the late nights for early mornings, and sweatpants for dress slacks. As much as I would like to hold on to my student life-style, it’s now time to revamp EVERYTHING, including my beloved iPhone. Time to ditch my high scores on Angry Birds and add applications that can help organize my new “big girl” life. Here are what I believe to be the best smartphone apps that are FREE (let’s not forget I have student loans to pay off!)  to help manage all areas of our busy lives.

Available for iPhone and Android: Free

It’s refreshing to look at my bank account, and actually feel I can buy more than Ramen Noodles. The app helps keep you on track with your finances. It categories all your expenses in easy to read and understand charts and graphs, and help you maintain a budget. It puts all of your expenditures into perspective against each other; so you can see how much you are spending on bills against food, going out, and shopping. Especially now that I am paying back student loans, it really has helped me buckle down and evaluate every purchase.


Schedule Planner
Available for iPhone and Android: Free
Schedule Planner

Year after year I run out and buy a fifteen dollar planner. Without fail, a month in it ends up collecting dust, or laying in the backseat of my car where mine currently resides. RIP beautiful blue and yellow paisley planner; it’s not you it’s most definitely me. Schedule Planner color codes and graphs your time management statistics. Done and done. It’s easy to use and keeps me on track for all my daily “To-Do’s.”


Cardmunch | LinkedIn
Available for iPhone and Android: Free
Card Munch

Networking events are stressful enough as it is, add on top of that the millions of business cards you seem to collect and have no place for. My collection used to sit in a pile on desk, until I frantically search through them to find out that I must have misplaced the one I need, and then resort to Google anyway. Not anymore. Cardmunch is so obvious, I am mad I didn’t come up with it myself. Snap a picture of the business card and it is instantly added to your contacts.


Workout Trainer by Skimble
Available for iPhone and Android: Free
Workout Trainer

Not all of us can afford a personal trainer, so an app that lets me explore different workouts is a great start to that beach bod New Year’s Resolution I always seem to have. No longer do you have to feel lost at what to do at the gym. It will provide you with video and photo instruction as well as a reminder to actually go to the gym.


Timehop: What did you do 1 year ago today?
Available for iPhone: Free

Timehop is fun app for reflecting on your past and where you are now. It’s a quick mental break that searches your social media (Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Foursquare/Flickr) for what you posted as far as 5 years in the past on that same day. Big girl or not it’s fun and sometimes quite embarrassing to see where you were and what you said.

Are there any other useful or fun app recommendations we should know about? Tell us in the comments!

LARGER Than Life Decor

It’s new. It’s never been done. It’s creating a buzz. PEC is helping companies and organizations say, “Here I am!” But how?

PEC is unveiling a new line of service this month: LARGER Than Life Decor. These decor elements are lightweight showpieces that are easily portable and can be recycled in a variety of ways. LARGER Than Life Decor have no limits; they are intended for anything from galas, tradeshows, and meetings to team building props and branding reinforcements.

But what do they look like? LARGER Than Life Decor are fully customizable pieces that are either precision cut or artistically sculpted, depending on the creative direction for the piece. The showpieces can range from a highly detailed 3D logo to a giant prop used to ‘wow’ guests at a gala. Take a look at how some customers have already used LARGER Than Life Decor.

LARGER Than Life Decor

In 2012, PEC planned a 3,500 person gala to end a large convention. At the gala, two branded LARGER Than Life Decor showpieces were displayed to reflect two of the company’s products. When the gala attendees spotted the decor showpieces, they were in awe. Upon first sight, gala attendees immediately rushed to take pictures of and with the decor pieces, proudly showing off that they were a part of this particular brand. Excitement over the branding and decor pieces continued throughout the evening.

LARGER Than Life Decor has the ability to awe thousands of people while serving as a branding reinforcement. These pieces bring the major WOW factor to events and spaces alike and create an unbeatable energy in any room. The LARGER Than Life Decor showpieces create a sensory experience that transcends the ordinary.

PEC is proud to have exclusive rights to contract your next LARGER Than Life Decor element. To learn more about PEC’s Larger Than Life Decor, visit our short online presentation.

Creating SMART Goals

With the New Year upon us, it’s important to begin planning your personal and professional goals for 2013.  To be more successful, start with a solid goal and a plan.  Be realistic and have fun!  If your goals are too hard, you could be less likely to achieve them.  Enjoy the process and allow for mistakes.

Below you’ll find some tips on how to begin your goal-achieving strategy.  According to the Michigan State University Extension, try the “SMART” acronym for creating SMART goals:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

What does each part of the acronym mean?

  • Specific – What exactly needs to be accomplished?  Who else might be involved?  Where will this take place?  Why do I want to accomplish this?
  • Measurable – How will I know if I have succeeded?  How many steps will it take to achieve this?
  • Attainable – Do I have the resources I need to make this happen?  Is this goal neither too easy, nor too hard for me to accomplish?  Will the steps I have planned help me reach my goal?
  • Relevant – Can I commit to this goal?  Will I not be able to reach another goal or do something else I want to do because I am working towards this goal?
  • Time-bound – When is the deadline?  When do I need to take action?

Setting SMART goals can help you decide if the goal is a good fit for you as it is, or if you need to revise it to ensure success.  It is often best to start with the “time-bound,” “specific” and “measurable” and then review them for being “attainable” and “relevant.”


“Change your thoughts and you change your world.”
Norman Vincent Peale

The Events Industry From the Eyes of an Intern

Over the past few months, I’ve gotten a glimpse at the behind-the-scenes coordinating of a few of PEC’s events.  It is truly incredible how a team can concoct so many ideas and have it all come together into a fluid event. Here is my take of the events industry from the eyes of an intern.
There are a few key qualities, I’ve noticed, that make PEC events so successful:
Teamwork – I’ve worked in a few office environments before, but never have I seen such a dedicated team working with each other. No matter what department, PEC employees always reach out in order to achieve the best possible result for each event/client.
Communication- I’ve learned that it takes proper communication within the office and between clients to successfully achieve event-coordinating goals. Whether it is hasty email correspondence or proper listening, in order to create the perfect environment, communication is key.
Creativity- Creativity and uniqueness seem to be the most standout qualities in this business.  It truly amazes me to see a project come through the office and watch as the brainstormed ideas become a reality.
Preparedness- As with many things in life, change is often unpredictable. Through preparing for these hiccups, PEC effectively manages these situations. They really strive to anticipate and cooperate so that any misunderstanding or unplanned circumstance is easily and fluidly repaired. Each department at PEC undergoes so much planning for each event and client; I was unaware of the amount of research and time dedicated to just ensuring PEC was well versed in each client so that the best results were possible.
While I’ve only been here a short while, I’ve learned so much already.  PEC has really opened my eyes into the world of event coordination and professionalism.