If the Corporate meetings world had a “phrase of the year,” the honor in 2005 would have to go to “strategic meeting management program,” or SMMP. The concept — which in brief connotes a coordinated, centralized approach to vendor sourcing, data tracking, and reporting — was embraced by Meeting Professionals International, whose Global Corporate Circle of Excellence put out a record four white papers on the topic in 2005, the most recent of which was published in November.
GCCOE, a brain trust of 13 corporate meeting professionals co-chaired by Maggie Boyce, CMM, manager of corporate meeting services with Kaiser Permanente, and Luca Favetta, global event director at SAP, met in New York in October to develop the recent paper, called “Defining aProgram: How Meetings Drive Business in Partnership-Focused Companies.” Recognizing that in a changing business environment, “powerful partnerships — with both internal and external constituents — are integral to an organization's strategic success,” the 11-page paper looks at core competencies needed by managers who succeed in a “Partnership Model,” rather than a more “traditional, linear business model.” The authors then discuss what an SMMP looks like when partnering successfully with internal stakeholders and external stakeholders, and how planners can position themselves more strategically. An appendix to the report updates the GCCOE's comprehensive outline of the key elements of an SMMP.
All four GCCOE white papers, plus the SMMP outline and other management tools, like sample budgets and templates, are at www.gccoe.mpiweb.org.