We really were very lucky with the weather at this year’s VETERAMA. Just one week later and we would have had an entire weekend of non-stop rain.
And of course, having restarted the event after a two-year break due to Covid-19, many people have asked us:
So, were you happy with the way it went?
Well, let’s put it like this. There’s still work to do in many areas if we want to get back to the way things were in 2019. But, overall, our assessment of the event is reasonably positive.
We did, however, receive some critical comments online and via email. Unfortunately, it’s always the case that people who were happy with everything are less likely to write and tell you about it.
Let me just cite one critical comment about dirty toilets as an example. Should we perhaps not ask ourselves – do toilets get dirty on their own, or could it have been the fault of the person in front of us in the queue?
Or the criticism that naked flames are not allowed? Anyone who remembers being there when a camping gas bottle exploded in the open-air area will certainly understand why this rule has been introduced by the authorities.
A tongue of flames shot up more than 20 m into the air and caused serious damage to a number of exhibition stands.
We were very lucky that no one was actually injured.
Or the criticism from the driver of a mobile home that there was no electricity, no proper toilets, no showers and no water in the car park.
Yes, I’m afraid we only have one car park that we can make available for mobile homes.
If you’re looking for a mobile home site, you’ve simply come to the wrong place.
Yet there were also some positive, friendly and constructive comments, and we are always very happy to receive these.
VETERAMA has become such a large event that even the smallest organisational error in the planning stages can quickly lead to considerable problems at the actual event.
This was where our real problem lay.
We have a team of around 30 people who really know what they’re doing because they have had many years’ experience at VETERAMA.
But we need more than 100 people. Up until now, we have used a staffing agency who have always sent us experienced staff. Unfortunately, they have now closed their business.
Apparently a competitor took over the larger part of their workforce, including people who had experience of working at VETERAMA.
So we thought, let’s switch to them. Of course, hoping that we would get the right people.
What actually happened was the worst catastrophe imaginable.
People who could hardly speak any German. People who fell asleep sitting in the chair at the gate that they were actually meant to be guarding; people who refused to take instructions from our regular staff.
I wanted to tell you about this because things like this really prey on your mind.
We have of course learned a lot from this experience. In future, we will make sure that the staff who will be working at VETERAMA are given very thorough and specialist training for their tasks.
And the toilet service employees will need to commence their duties earlier in the mornings.
A few days ago, we held a meeting with all the members of our regular team for an in-depth discussion on all of these points. They can see that we are on the ball … or perhaps we should say on the “rusty bodywork”, to make sure it’ll soon be shiny again.
And something else. We are already getting calls asking when registrations will be open for our two 2023 VETERAMA events.
Please bear with us a little longer. We are reworking and fine-tuning our invitation. Everything should be ready by the beginning of December.
All exhibitors who register in good time should be able to get their regular spots, which they have had since 2019.
So, that’s all the things we have on our minds at the moment.
If you have any thoughts or input to offer us on the subject of VETERAMA, feel free to drop us a line.