“How do we create experiences that deliver deeper meaning and value for both attendees and ourselves, as planners?” Janet Sperstad from Madison Area Technical College shared the preliminary results of a major study into Purposeful Meetings. As part of this year’s IMEX Talking Point, she delivered the keynote, Purposeful meetings research: creating deeper meaning.
Respondents from 33 countries took part in a survey exploring the five pillars of the Purposeful Meetings model, covering aspects of technology, meeting design, wellbeing & CSR and behavioural science. Janet shared examples of how to deliver Purposeful Meetings, in order to create memorable, impactful experiences. She confirmed the power of meetings as a catalyst for ideas – ‘wisdom happens in a meeting’- and the importance of face to face relationship building, which as a result of ‘a shared experience with your tribe.”
Janet’s keynote was exceptionally well received, leaving many planners with plenty of ideas to put into action as audience member Maryann Mannix-White, Executive Manager of Business Operations at the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees, explains: “There are many aspects of Purposeful Meetings which I can put into practice immediately – creating ‘palate cleanser’ breaks, showing visuals of the natural environment and carefully considering seating and music.”
Amanda Fishburn, VP Operations of Ignition Design Group, adds: “The aspects of neuroscience were particularly interesting. We need to move away from being too technical, to focusing on the power of the event experience - how we make delegates feel.”
“Janet’s advice on the power of nature to boost delegate engagement really resonates with me. We’re based in north Germany near a UNESCO world heritage park and often hold meetings in the natural environment – tapping into the power of the local, outdoor environment really works,” explains Tanja Weinekotter, CEO of Marketing & Event Support.
Janet’s keynote is part of a series of education sessions throughout the show focusing on Purposeful Meetings. Jessie States, manager of professional development for Meeting Professionals International, discussed how to ensure events meet the business goals of the organisation. In The 'why' variable: understanding the strategic purpose of your meetings, she revealed the questions to ask meeting owners in order to determine their business goals, as well as how to set the right metrics to measure the effectiveness of the event.
“It’s crucial to plan and measure your meetings so they deliver real business growth, and ensure your organisation understands their impact on the bottom line. Consider what has led to the creation of your meeting, how it has evolved and what it could accomplish in the future,” explained Jessie. “There’s a sea of change in the industry – planners are understanding the need to effectively measure and articulate the value of meetings.”
This session is part of a wider programme of free education running across the three days of the show. Participants can choose from 10 tracks including technology, business skills, diversity and marketing in order to create their own bespoke schedule.
For more Purposeful Meeting ideas explored at IMEX in Frankfurt, view our purposeful meetings itinerary.
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Notes to editors
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Next year’s IMEX in Frankfurt takes place 15 – 17 May 2018.
The IMEX Group also runs IMEX America, America’s worldwide exhibition for incentive travel, meetings & events, which will take place at Sands® Expo and Convention Center, at The Venetian®| The Palazzo® in Las Vegas on 10 to 12 October 2017.