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My only warning with this is that it make become too successful! It may actually attracts more vendors, especially among those whose main interest is as implementators and don't care much for the getting involved with the protocol development politics. As it gets bigger, the IETF will need to be ready with larger locations and offering pre-ordering space selections for the next events. This is very important part of the strategic booth location planning. Finally, a certain level of commitment will need to be shown because if the IETF does eventually decide it no longer wants (or can't) to get into this area, then refunds will be needed and whole slew of legal messy contract lawyers are needed. Also, once its reaches of level where its big part of the IETF, it might begin to see the unions knocking on the door which adds even more cost.
-- HLS John C Klensin wrote:
--On Friday, March 16, 2012 21:28 -0700 Joel jaeggli <joelja@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:On 3/16/12 20:04 , John C Klensin wrote:Note too that, if the company sends only five technical people and concludes that it doesn't suffer harm from that small a number, the odds of getting back up to 10 if the experiment is terminated and those five sales/market types disappear is just about zero, at least until the economy improves considerable. Scale and juggle the figures as you like, this is not a zero-risk experiment.You know nothing about marketing budgets.Sorry, Joel. I have both had to administer those budgets and policies, been the victim of them, as well as seen it go on in companies with whom I've done consulting work on organizational and strategic matters. Companies differ -- I tried to say that -- but in many companies that are really oriented toward the bottom line, marketing controls virtually all travel budgets. In a few, sales and/or controls and perceptions of their needs control almost all budget categories: Engineering is rarely a profit center, the money has to come from somewhere, and the organizational question is how much control the money source and its needs affect how it is spent. I didn't mean to suggest that the effects would be felt immediately -- there are usually budget cycles. But, over the medium term, even more relaxed organizations in tight budget situations do tend to eventually notice "total number of people attending from company", and push back. If the attendees include both people from cost centers and people from profit centers, the latter tend to win the battle for slots, or at least to win less. But I suppose I should defer to your superior experience in senior management and corporate finance roles. john