Why all the PAII-bashing?

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Aussie Innkeeper's picture
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 So, I've seen some rather derrogatory comments here about PAII, particularly with their handling of B&B's for Vets program. Put yourself in their shoes for a minute - trying to please everyone. Oh, wait...we DO try to please eveyone! Just like we try to appeal to our guests and potential guests, PAII has to walk that line, too. 

First and foremost, though, they have to keep in mind their members and what's best for them. Remember them? The people who are paying to be members of the association so that they can benefit from it.  If I'm paying for my PAII membership why would I think it would be fair for non-members to get the same benefits? I don't! Would you pay for B&Bdotcom if every time a potential guest looked up your zip code your neighbor's property was there and they didn't pay for a membership? Remember the motto, "Membership has its privileges"? 

PAII has made it very simple and SO affordable to belong! What other organization can you belong to for $89? No place that I know of. Well, ok, my Costco membership is a little less than that.

PAII has handled some other very delicate issues lately with extreme professionalism. And, we've got no idea what's going on behind the scenes that we don't even see. I belong to PAII for the countless resources, the advocacy, the comradere - goodness knows I can't run this business by myself!

That's just my 2 cents..getting down off of soapbox now. 

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Lynne I only wish you would have added this to the other thread it was pertaining to, if this was what you are talking about. The title term "ALL" is not accurate, there are many who respect PAII on this forum, and are members or not, and are not 'bashing' it. I think it was about the one topic, and not an "all" out attack.

Just wanted to get my own 2 cents in as well. I think most here will stay out of this discussion, but still have some sentiment.

Continue on...

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Arks's picture
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Joey Bloggs wrote:

I think most here will stay out of this discussion...

Amen to that!

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the system burped, and posted this twice. ignore this one and read the other one. thanks. Smiling

gillumhouse's picture
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It was not a bashing of PAII and at the time, I waited to see someone from PAII would post a comment. I have a theory that PAII waited to see what the concensus was from innkeepers BEFORE saying anything. You know the old float a rumor and see what the reaction will be. So please, before anyone castigates me, look how long the comments were flying back an forth. I held my water about the Vets program last year - they made it a complicated mess and it is true, I had to contact Marti Mayne to get listed. THAT is not good.

PAII is welcome to use whatever they want as a membership tool except this, in my mind. I had hoped the Vets program would help PAII GET members as it made innkeepers aware PAII existed - do not laugh, there are some who never heard of it. I would not have  if I had not joined my State Assoc!

The Vets was started - and I cannot tell you how many e-mails I sent to associations, both State and Regional, to inns, phone calls etc to get innkeepers on board. I started e-mailing association in February after Jay said in January, the #1 reason people did not stay at a B &B  was they never thought of it. The 8-member Cody, WY Assoc was the first to say, we are in. By July or August, I really do not remember when Muirford created the web site, we started getting more on board - because they could now SEE how we were presenting it. And it WAS simple - exhausting for us -  but a simple spreadsheet format.

The cooperation of inns all over the country and a large number of them was required to get the attention of the Media. THIS was required first as a method of telling the military it was there for them to use and secondly to give the warm & fuzzy to get the Media attention for the industry as the primary objective was met - THANK THE MILITARY AND THEIR SPOUSES. This did get huge publicity for the industry - and it was FREE (other than our room costs). There was not nearly the amount of publicity last year and there should have bee: "Bed & Breakfasts around the Country give free rooms to Vets" and "Canada picks up the B & Bs For Vets in 2011"

When it was given over to PAII, it was with the understanding it would be open to all because the objective was the military and it was the numbers that made it noteworthy. I was hoping it would be tied to BWTS as an example of why B & Bs were better - we recognize why we are free, etc....

I am going into all of this because it is implied that PAII was attacked. I paid my membership - several times with credit card because I did not have it in the checking account AND I paid my pledge to BWTS the same way. I supported PAII and BWTS. I will admit I have been disapointed with BWTS but that is me and for the most part, I have shut up.

muirford's picture
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gillumhouse wrote:
It was not a bashing of PAII and at the time, I waited to see someone from PAII would post a comment. I have a theory that PAII waited to see what the concensus was from innkeepers BEFORE saying anything. You know the old float a rumor and see what the reaction will be. So please, before anyone castigates me, look how long the comments were flying back an forth.

It was one week and one day (Sunday night to Monday business hours) from when the first volley was fired on the PAII forum to  Jay's response about it.  Given that no call to sign up had even gone out to PAII members yet, it was quite likely that the technical details hadn't been worked out yet - I don't think they have yet - and PAII didn't think that they needed to issue any position yet.  

Since the website is now database-driven, adding non-members becomes a manual task - as it was last year for the hundreds of innkeepers who needed technical help to get signed up.  In addition, PAII may be able to make some updates to the website on their own but some require involving whatever third party developed the site - meaning spending real money and not jumping into it half-assed.  Last but not least, when we had the website there were exactly three people working on it who had to agree and there was exactly one person who made the call on the website stuff - my DH, who said what he would and wouldn't do, and there was really no negotiating on it.  Not everything was added to the website that Kathleen wanted.  PAII has a board of directors, and I'm sure some of them were not interested in spending money or resources to promote non-PAII members.  

A big part of managing the workload was allowing innkeepers to sign up themselves and keep their own updates as to vacancies.  If PAII hadn't invested the resources to develop the program to make that happen - which they did in anticipation of B&Bs for Vets - we wouldn't have done it for a second year.  Lots of problems came from industry web companies who discovered their clients were getting crazy amounts of traffic from the website and called all their other clients to get on it.  I believe this was the reason that we had so many signups, and many of them were bogus - inns who signed up and were immediately full, or who weren't really offering the free night. The B&Bs who really want to partipate aren't doing it for the link love or the PR or the recognition.

I really doubt there is some big Machiavellian conspiracy theory at work here, just the changes that come with any organizational movement.

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Jeanne

There are no rules, just follow your heart. ~ Robin Williams

 

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Just curious, did PAII ask to take it over or did the original people need someone to take it over because it became more than they could handle?  From what I have read, I thought they were helping because that is what was needed - not because they are the "big bad wolf".  If PAII did not take it on, would someone else take it on without charging?  It seems like a great cause, but of course there is a cost to do so. 

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Amber

 

muirford's picture
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Amber wrote:
Just curious, did PAII ask to take it over or did the original people need someone to take it over because it became more than they could handle?  From what I have read, I thought they were helping because that is what was needed - not because they are the "big bad wolf".

From my perspective, that is absolutely true.  We could and would not have handled the website for a second year.  

Amber wrote:
If PAII did not take it on, would someone else take it on without charging?  It seems like a great cause, but of course there is a cost to do so. 

I don't know; we never went down that road.  Some of the industry website people might have done it to get the traffic, but probably not without some kind of benefit (money or exposure) for themselves. 

gillumhouse's picture
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Amber wrote:

Just curious, did PAII ask to take it over or did the original people need someone to take it over because it became more than they could handle?  From what I have read, I thought they were helping because that is what was needed - not because they are the "big bad wolf".  If PAII did not take it on, would someone else take it on without charging?  It seems like a great cause, but of course there is a cost to do so. 

I started it and Muirford & her DH came in with the web site.  do not know how it would have been done the following year - I expect we would have just used the list we already had, I know it was exhausting for all concerned. My biggest surprise was the nastiness from INNKEEPERS demanding to get listed and then demanding to get marked FULL. Some called me many times ad I had more than a few calls on my toll-free!

We did it free on our ends. I hav ea relationship with a wonderful PR guy who believed in this and worked for whatever donations would come in. Hoyt Dotry of SC ofered to be the one to bring up donations to the cause - we figured if everyone sent in $5 we could pay the PR guy a reasonable amount, knowing everyone would not send. I made copies of EVERY check before i deposited it in an account I set up just for that. Some sent more than $5 but in the end, after adding some of my own money, I was able to send the PR guy a check for $475 - and trust me, he EARNED every penny and more. HE introduced me to the AP reporter who put it on the wires - that night Fox News called for an interview and it went viral. he sent out many press releases and lined up TV and radio interviews for WV inns.

PAII offered and we said OK - BUT with the understanding (at least on my part) that it would remain the open to all in the industry program. No one is calling the the big bad anything. PAII does great things - I joined because Jay got T A (otherwise known as the 1000lb gorilla) to sit down and actually listen to the concerns of the B & B Industry. They are the advocates and marketing of the industry - that is why I paid dues and pledged money I did not have to BWTS.

And in case you are wondering what I got out of all this - satisfaction. Period. I have never had one paid reservation made that said, we booked because you participated in B & Bs F o r  V e ts

Madeleine's picture
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I think the initial issue with PAII was caused by misinformation on whether or not they were going to let any B&B participate in the vets program. The issue was valid IF the information had been correct because the program was started by a couple of B&B's without any help at all from PAII.

PAII took it over from the folks who organized it. To just say that the organizers and others who had really gotten the ball rolling could no longer participate if they weren't members was a slap in the face. Now, as it turns out, that info that non-members could not participate was not correct.

Please keep in mind that because YOU, personally, can afford an $89 membership does not mean everyone can. We all do the best we can with our resources.

 

 

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