We know that many are now home working remotely and/or caring for children while schools are closed, so we thought it might be fun to create a maritime-themed coloring page for them AND a make a contest out of it as well!
Many thanks to our partner, Ironmark, for helping us bring this to life!
From our partner, My Cleaning Service, Inc. - here are some quick tips about how viruses, like COVID-19, spread and what you can do to protect yourself and others.
Much of what people are going through right now is actually identity related. Our self-esteem and identity are so closely wrapped into what we do and produce at work. For those of us who are watching everything we’ve worked so hard to build disappear, it’s really difficult.
The hospitality industry has been hit really hard. We’ve literally been in a whirlwind of tornado strength . . . cancellations of all meetings, events and individual travel. Hotels and Conference Centers are literally shutting their doors, people are being laid off, and the travel industry has come to a screeching halt. We certainly aren’t the only industry being impacted, there are many industries being hit really hard right now.
What do we do from here? How can we utilize this time to regroup and pause. What direction will we go in when the slate has literally been wiped clean? My Mom often uses the statement “God wastes nothing.” In no way do I believe that God is responsible for Coronavirus, but are blessings possible even in these terrible circumstances? Are we capable of learning and growth in the middle of this chaos? I certainly believe we can create good in the midst of even the most difficult situations.
So, how do we regroup? What should we do now? How do we let go and then make room in our hearts and minds for possibilities?
In times of crisis there are opportunities that present themselves. Opportunities to show kindness and compassion, to practice gratitude and be free from the everyday muck that sometimes binds us. If we can lean into this temporary moment of severe difficulty and embrace all of what it’s offering we may be quite surprised by the gifts wrapped in brown paper packages. It’s often in the moments of lack when we can find the most clarity.
I was speaking with an older individual who has been forced to go in a different direction in terms of his career and is having a difficult time leaning into the change. In speaking with him I learned that he has a core value he can’t let go of. A core value that says “The moment I stop working I’ll start dying”. This nearly breaks my heart, but I’m realizing a lot of us feel this way. We are so greatly connected to producing, to working, that even when we are forced to stop for a temporary period of time we are presented with what we perceive to be truths like “I’m a failure”, “I’m not valuable”, “I’m not worthy” because we are no longer achieving in the way we’ve always measured achievement.
I feel like a farmer who planted her crops, worked the land and watched the produce begin to grow up out of the land. Excitedly expecting the crops to flourish and to have plenty to eat and sell at harvest. And now I’m looking out onto the empty fields after a major storm has hit and I was forced to rip the dead, rotting harvest out of the ground and toss it out.
It’s a terrible, awful, helpless feeling. There is a sadness and it’s okay to take a moment to mourn. But if we are looking into the empty field, then we aren’t dead. We are still worthy. We are important to someone. We have children or friends or family that need us. We have things yet to accomplish. We have love to give and dreams to dream.
Our identity, our self-worth, is SO much more than just what we produced or what we worked on today. If we can lean into these scary feelings and allow ourselves to be healed by the reality that we are more than our work . . . that healing will provide the source for new growth, insights and passions. It sounds crazy, but If we can take this opportunity to pause and evaluate, if we can separate ourselves from production for even a short period of time, if we can heal and let go of or evaluate the core values that are holding us back we will come out of this changed. If we take this time and moment of rest seriously and we dig deep and we allow ourselves to really feel and experience all of this (even the really hard stuff) . . . I believe we will catapult into the next phase of our lives.
How often do we wish we had a bit more time? What is it you’ve been needing? Open the brown paper package and take advantage of the gifts in front of you. Spend time with your children, spouse or self. Read a book, sing a song, paint, bake, hike, write the business plan, create your vision board, re-evaluate your department or business, meditate, sleep . . .
Do what’s necessary now because this season is fleeting. We are all hopeful to “get back to normal” as soon as possible, but when it’s time to plant the crops again will you know who you are and what seeds to sow?
Written by Jill Porter, Director of Sales & Marketing, MCC. Jill has 20 years of hospitality experience, ranging from limited and select service to full service properties (sales and operational experience), branded and independent hotels and conference centers.
Today, March 19, marks the first official day of Spring! There are so many places to visit and things to do nearby in Maryland and D.C., especially now that the weather is warming up!
Here's a short list to get you started:
This list certainly doesn't encompass all of the festivals and other things to do nearby. Thankfully, the Maryland Office of Tourism provides several lists of the numerous activities and events Maryland has to offer. Check them out below:
Effectively using technology in meetings has become a crucial factor for success. As technology becomes easier to integrate into meetings, it becomes more and more important for both experiences and outcomes. Merging technology with meeting planning tools — including websites, apps, social media, and other IT initiatives — brings inspiring opportunities to make each meeting and event an effective and valuable one. Modern audiovisual technology can automate manual processes and streamline each element of an event. It can be used to quickly communicate important information, such as last-minute changes, to attendees and can also create targeted communication plans for moving forward after a meeting. Here are a few exciting ways to incorporate technology into your meetings.
Video Calls and Web Conferencing
With so many remote and virtual employees, meeting attendees are often working from home, in another office, or even in another country. With the right tools, they can still contribute to a meeting via video calls or web conferencing. Both free and paid-for apps enable you to see each other and share presentations and documents with ease.
Interactive whiteboard software for large touchscreens supports brainstorming sessions, group involvement, and audience feedback. Many electronic whiteboards have USB ports enabling connection to devices including flash drives, cameras, and camcorders. Some are even “smart” and can connect wirelessly to a local network or the Internet, allowing real-time input from multiple users in different locations.
Advanced projection technology has led to new interactive projectors that not only display files for everyone to see, but allow individual team members to engage with documents via touch technology, similar to interactive whiteboards. This means your group will be able to edit documents, presentations, and reports together as a team.
Social Media & Mobile Apps
Integrating social media and mobile apps into meetings and events allows meeting planners and presenters to use large-screen LED displays to share real-time results on trending topics, statistics, poll results, and comments or questions from attendees. Displaying live feeds and results for everyone to see and discuss on shared screens also keeps individuals from focusing on personal mobile devices, increasing the interactive experience for all.
Virtual reality technology has the potential to become the next big thing for meetings and events. There is growing use of VR by venue operators to create virtual tours and site inspections, to showcase venues ahead of a formal opening, and to create VR experiences for properties worldwide. More applications can be expected in the near future.
Access to modern communication tools is quickly becoming one of the most important elements of meeting venue selection. Maritime Conference Center, situated just four miles from Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, offers a full range of modern audiovisual equipment and technical support. We’d love to help you incorporate technology into your next meeting in the Baltimore, Annapolis and Washington, DC area.
International Women's Day is celebrated every year on March 8th. This year the campaign theme is Each for Equal.
The main message of this year's campaign is that an equal world is an enabled world. We are all responsible for our own actions, our own thoughts, so we can all actively choose to challenge stereotypes, improve situations, fight bias and celebrate women's achievements. We are all parts of a whole.
Further, equality is not just a women's issue - it's a business issue, and it's essential for economies and communities to thrive. The positives a gender equal world bring to the table are healthier, wealthier and more harmonious communities, workplaces, etc.
Together we can all help create a gender equal world!
MCC celebrated by striking this year's #EachforEqual pose and participating in local events like Maryland Public Television's Women Leadership Forum.
Click here to learn more about this year's IWD campaign and what you can do to help forge a gender equal world.
On Friday, February 21st, Maritime Conference Center's catering partner, FLIK, hosted it's first annual FLIK Associate Chili Cook-Off!
Two teams (front of house vs back of house) competed during the lunch hour in our Chesapeake Dining Room for a set of golden cooking utensils, gift cards, FLIK bucks, and, of course, bragging rights!
Margie & Isaiah (front of house) took on Tyrone & Toni (back of house). The chili meals also included all the appropriate fixings, chips and cornbread. MCC & MITAGS guests and staff had the opportunity to taste each one, then cast their vote.
The winners were the back of house team of Tyrone & Toni! Congratulations to all participants and to FLIK for a great lunch-time event for all to enjoy!
On Friday, February 14th, MCC Senior Sales Analyst, Brian Senft attended Maryland Tourism Day in Annapolis. The event featured special guest speakers including:
Tourism is extremely important in our home state of Maryland! It creates jobs, sustains small business, generates revenue, and supports our future!
According to the Maryland Tourism Coalition:
Visitors to Maryland spent $18.1 billion on travel expenses in 2018, up 2.1 percent from the previous year, according to a report released recently by the Maryland Office of Tourism Development & Maryland Dept. of Commerce. This increase was despite three Federal Government shut downs. While the Federal Government shut down in January 2018 was three days, February for five hours, and during the winter holiday in December, travel to federal installations in Maryland were impacted. In addition, Maryland welcomed more than 41.9 million visitors in 2018.
“Maryland’s tourism industry continues to be a powerful economic driver for our Maryland, proving good jobs for tens of thousands of our citizens and billions in revenue for our state,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “Our continued investment in tourism will ensure we are able to provide a great experience to our visitors, as well as valuable returns for many communities across the state.”
According to the report, more than 74 percent of visitor spending focused on three areas: food and beverage, lodging, and transportation. This spending has generated $2.5 billion in state and local tax revenues. More than 150,000 Marylanders were directly employed in the tourism industry in 2018, making it the 10th largest private sector employer in the state. The industry supported a payroll of $6.5 billion, which is an increase of 4 percent from 2017.
In addition to the many benefits mentioned above, tourism gives Maryland the opportunity to show-off all of the amazing locations, activities, history, etc. that it has to offer.
Become a tourism advocate with us and join the hundreds of business and association members of Maryland Tourism Coalition working to grow and support tourism throughout Maryland! Learn more at mdtourism.org. #TourismWorks4MD
According to the U.S. Travel Association, Americans are earning even more days off than last year. But more than half (55%) of American workers report not using all their days off—totaling 768 million unused vacation days, up 9% from 2017. What’s more, 236 million of those days were forfeited completely—equaling $65.5 billion in lost benefits and an individual average of $571 in donated work time.
You can work on planning your 2020 vacation with this Maryland Travel Bucket List, put together by the Maryland Office of Tourism!
In case you need more inspiration to visit Maryland this year, check out this article that explains why Charm City is the perfect weekend break for couples, foodies, craft-beer fans and families alike.
Happy Plan a Vacation Day!
Congratulations to MCC's front desk agent, Yonic Machado, on being recognized as our Associate of the 4th Quarter for 2019!
Yonic has only been with us for two years, but has already made a huge impact on our organization! He consistently goes above and beyond for our customers and for his fellow colleagues. AND, even in the midst of "chaos," he always keeps a calm demeanor and a smile on his face. We are so proud of you Yonic! Congratulations and keep up the great work!
Maritime Conference Center BlogWe've launched a new blog and can't wait to share news and other content with you!
Invisible App Zone