Dear SITE Members,

As many of you know, a large U.S.-based global insurance company recently canceled over $80 million in meetings due to scrutiny from the press on one particular event. This has created a flurry of distortion in the media about the value of meetings, exhibitions, events, and incentives. I thought it would be helpful to let you know what SITE is doing to represent the motivational events segment.

We are currently working with several industry associations and corporate leaders to mobilize focus on the economic impact of our industry. In my role as chair of the Convention Industry Council, I am regularly in touch with colleagues from related sectors on this issue. According to the Convention Industry Council, meetings, exhibitions, incentive and business travel account for over $128 billion annual direct spending, employing over 1.8 million US workers and contributing over $20 billion in direct taxes. Expand this data set to include the other 86 countries that SITE represents, and the impact on our global economy is staggering. Please stay tuned for updates on this mobilization effort.

Let me be clear. SITE believes in the power and ROI of motivational experiences. This is the message we are communicating to industry press and US national publications. It is incumbent upon SITE now more than ever to educate the marketplace on the value of motivational experiences. There are many ways we will be doing this:

We are going to make available to you a live webinar in case you have immediate questions or want to hear from experts on how to handle this shift in the marketplace. Watch for information on this exclusive SITE member opportunity next week.

SITE’s new strategic vision will be unveiled at the SITE International Conference in Montreux. As you have heard, this plan has been in development for almost two years. Today’s headlines validate our approach to reassert the value of motivational experiences and events to business today.

We will explore these issues at education sessions at the SITE International Conference including the keynote Global Leadership Forum with the leaders from DMAI, ICAA, ISES, MPI and PCMA and a breakout session "Struggle or Succeed? The Viewpoint on Motivation" led by Mary MacGregor, BCD Meetings and Incentives.

Now more than ever is the time to be affiliated with SITE’s global network—and we are glad that you are a part of it.