Smart Monday Serves up Cutting Edge Content for IMEX America #imex14

Smart Monday, IMEX America 2014Once again, MPI and other association partners provided IMEX America attendees with a full day of free pre-trade show education, training, workshops. and networking. In total, 30 concurrent sessions and deep dives have been presented. Here are a few highlights.

Association partners that teamed up with MPI to deliver Smart Monday included PCMA, Site Global, GBTA Academy, the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI), IAEE, ICCA, The Center for Association Leadership (ASAE), GMIC, IAPCO, and International Special Events Society (ISES). ISES Approved is the new international education standard selected for the creative event professional

ISES Approved sessions at IMEX America have been identified as content that complement the ISES Core Curriculum.

The day kicked off with an MPI Keynote entitled How Joy and Optimism Ignite the Best in Us by Steve Gross, a recognized expert in promoting resiliency through joyful play. Morning sessions included Hotel Sales Giants Talk About What Keeps Them up at Night, Make the Business Case for Incentive Travel Programs with Terri Breining of Breining Group LLC, and The Great Adult Learning Debate by Kevin White of the Event Leadership Institute.

Following the morning networking break, 20 attendees took advantage of the MeetingCentric Tours that gave event and meeting planners a back-of-house tour of The Venetian, The Palazzo and Sands Expo operations.

Lisa BarhamAfter lunch, Lisa Barham, Internet Prospecting Guru, Hotel Resources, presented tips and search criteria for uncovering new group business opportunities in an encouraging session entitled There’s Still Time to Close Business for 2014. For example, by doing a simple search engine search for:

conference your city "location tbd"

or

meeting "location tbd" your city

it's possible to identify organizations that may require assistance with venue selection or event planning. Lisa also shared the fact that many associations put their meeting minutes on-line including post-mortems for annual conferences and events. By reading this information, it is possible to identify organizations that may be ready to find new suppliers.

While the session was primarily geared towards hotels, there were plenty of take-aways for event planning businesses and event industry suppliers.

Roger LongRoger Long, Chief Sparring Partner at Blue Ox Coaching and Consulting presented an interactive session about Engaging and Influencing Stakeholder to Increase Event Impact and ROI. Organizational Design (OD) strategies were used to provide tips for identifying key stakeholders, clarifying their objectives, pin-pointing their needs and helping them take ownership for events. 

There were also a series of deep dive including Risk Management Tools you can Use with Tyra Hilliard, meetings industry attorney, meeting planner, and writer. The Business Value and Advantage of Sustainable Event Planning, delivered by Paul Salinger, and Deep Dive: Healthcare Meeting Compliance Certificate Program presented by Pat Schaumann of MPI's Healthcare sector.

Smart Monday ended with IMEX American Association Evening at MGM Grand Conferences Center and Site Nite North America at Mandalay Bay's Light Night Club.

Photo Credits: Anne Thornley-Brown, Executive Oasis International

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