Keynote speakers, panelists, and group discussions during the Financial & Insurance Conference Planners Southeast Region Meeting carried through this year’s theme: Solutions for Your Resolutions—Connect. Learn. Evolve. Nearly 70 planners and hospitality partners participated in the event March 29–30 at the beautiful St. Regis Atlanta.

Motivational speaker Neil Rock kicked things off, demonstrating how he inspires millions of Americans to accomplish their goals by simplifying daunting tasks. Neil asked all the attendees to write down their goals—from daily goals to lifetime goals—and then explained his “VWV” (Visualize, Write, Visible) principles. He gave remarkable real-life examples about athletes, entertainers, presidents, and everyday people who have used this method to reach their dreams. Attendees then broke into roundtable discussions to talk about implementing these tools. The groups had lively conversations after hearing each other’s goals and many made some new ones after learning what others had set for themselves. Everyone walked away with goals for every day, one year, five years, and a lifetime, written down in a handy takeaway to keep those goals visible.

Also on the agenda was FICP Membership Manager Mark Swets, offering an update about what is new on the FICP horizon and the benefits of FICP membership.

Sharing and Giving Back
Five industry veterans then shared the state of their businesses, some best practices, and opinions about the future of the hospitality industry. The panel was facilitated by John Cruz, Blue Cross Blue Shield of N.C. Panelists included Karen Knox, CMP, CMM, of Blue Cross Blue Shield of N.C., and Worth Wilson, CLU, FLMI, of Genworth Financial. Lindsay Conway from Kuoni Destination Management Inc., Debra Edwards of Wynn Las Vegas | Encore, and Katy Gettinger of Starwood Hotels & Resorts were also part of the discussion.

As a way to give back, attendees had the opportunity to support the Aflac Cancer Center in Atlanta, which is recognized as one of the leading pediatric cancer, hematology, and BMT programs in the country. Participants were asked to bring items for children undergoing treatments at the center, such as video games, DVDs, and gift cards. Julianne Cagle from the Aflac Center was there to accept the donations and explain more about the center and how the donations help children.

To close out the program, Durwood Fincher (sponsored by Marc Reede with Rave Reviews) had the group roaring with laughter. His “Mr. Doubletalk” routine provided hilarious insight into Fincher’s world. At the conclusion, the audience was shown a video of unsuspecting meeting attendees and their interactions with “Mr. Doubletalk” over the course of the two days.

A special thank you to the St. Regis Atlanta for hosting this year’s meeting!