Versatility Key to Planners' Success

On the Record: Donald Trump Speaks

Successful Meetings: You had your "Apprentices" plan events as challenges. How is running an event like running a company?

Donald Trump: Planning an event requires one to keep the big picture in mind while maintaining all the details, which are myriad. This is not an easy balance to achieve and maintain.

SM: What qualities should a successful planner have?

Trump: Versatility is important for success. Planning a meeting is almost like being a producer—you have to be in charge while allowing others to think creatively in your environment. A producer many times has to take the back seat, while still being responsible for everything and everyone around him. It's a very good indicator of someone's abilities and leadership qualities.

SM: According to Successful Meetings' research, many CEOs have a low opinion of the value of meeting planners. Do you think they're missing the mark?

Trump: I have great respect for event planners because I know what their work entails. It's just that the events and meetings themselves can get in the way. I have five-minute meetings in my office where a lot is accomplished. Sometimes we don't even sit down. I'm used to fast because fast is what is required.