A few final thoughts as the conference draws to a close:
The Hotel – Hit
To use the elevations room cards are scanned and then passengers are assigned to one of eight “cars.” Everyone assigned to a car is going to one of three or four floors. When the massive crowds exited the meeting rooms and flooded the elevators the system very efficiently handled the crowds.
The Hotel – Miss
Apparently the hotel failed to share information about the presence of 1,700 compliance geeks with its staff. The restaurants and shops were overwhelmed and unable to turn the crowds in a reasonable amount of time. The inability of the hotel to handle the crowd was one of the two most frequent complaints about the conference.
The ABA – Hit
Attendee name badges contained bar codes, which were scanned as attendees entered each meeting room. Apparently this assured only registered attendees entered the sessions and presumably gave the ABA information on who attended what sessions.
The ABA – Miss
The other most common complaint was that some sessions were assigned to rooms too small to handle the crowd. Some attendees sat on the floor, while others were shut out. None of the sessions were recorded. It seems that attendees could have been polled prior to the conference regarding which sessions they planned to attend and then sessions could have been assigned to different sized rooms based on results of the polling.
Most comments were overwhelmingly positive. Another good year for the ABA.
Next year the ABA stays home; it is back to Washington, D.C.