"We look like travel, we smell like travel, but we're a lot more."
That's a key comment in a report out this month from IMEX, the exhibition for incentive travel, meetings, and events, that details corporate meetings executives’ struggles to communicate the value of meetings to their boards of directors. The report is based on Meetings for Success, a three-hour gathering of 16 senior meetings and events buyers at IMEX 2009, held in Frankfurt, Germany, in May.
Organized by IMEX and the Joint Meetings Industry Council, the meeting was facilitated by Eric Rozenberg, chairman-elect of Meeting Professionals International and president of Belgium-based Swantegy. The buyers represented industries from pharmaceutical to electronics, and were joined by representatives of meetings industry associations MPI, International Congress & Convention Association and International Association of Congress Centres.
The goal of the Meetings for Success forum was to develop takeaways for communicating about meetings. As such, says Carina Bauer, IMEX marketing and operations director, it is a complement to IMEX's Meetings Under the Microscope initiative, which includes a vast online collection of meeting management resources for use before, during, and after an event, covering details from promotion to nutrition to measurement.
As a continuation of the Meetings for Success forum, IMEX has announced a webinar series facilitated by David Kliman, former chairman of MPI. Aimed at corporate meetings executives who want to hear how their peers are winning strategic understanding from their C-suites, each "Corporate Meetings: Head to Head" webinar will compare the successes and challenges of two senior corporate buyers from different industry sectors. Webinar dates are: November 5, 2009; February 3, 2010; and April 7, 2010. Click here for free registration. You can also download the Meetings for Success white paper or see the agenda for IMEX 2010, set for May 25–27 at Messe Frankfurt.