by Fun Lee – NYPCMA President
NYPCMA teamed up with the Greater New York Chapter of Meeting Professionals International to host GMID 2018 on Wednesday, April 11, 2018. SITE Northeast chapter was also our close liaison helping us market this event.
GMID aims to shine a light on the real impact meetings have on businesses, economies and communities. Meeting professionals organizations, association chapters, corporations, destinations, partners and other supporters hold events around the world today to support this international day of advocacy.
Our speakers this year represented the powerhouse of both MPI and PCMA. We had Michael Dominguez, Chief Sales Office of MGM Resorts International; Jami Stapelmann, Executive Director of Global Travel & Meetings at The Estée Lauder Companies and current PCMA Corporate Task Force Chair; and Carvie Gillikin, Vice President of Fourth Wall Events and former MPI Greater New York Chapter President.
Michael provided an update on what it means to be a meeting advocate and how we all can help the cause. There is a toolkit on http://www.meetingsmeanbusiness.com/ which we can all use. He provided an overview on his efforts as a Co-chair of the Meetings Means Business Coalition and what they do to target parties on the governmental level.
Jami highlighted her personal story on how she empowered herself and how to be a leader. She also encouraged that to be a leader, one must also learn from others.
Carvie emphasized how important it is to monitor one’s online profile because this impacts professional branding. He provided tips on cleaning up on Google searches, asked everyone to know their value proposition, and to publicize.
The program ended with the panel expressing their thoughts on safety, security and industry consolidation. The panel emphasized that every planner should have an internal communications document in case a tragedy happens onsite. Planners need to have a clear communication path with their delegates.
The panel also stressed that relationships with vendors remain very important, especially in these times. In January, Marriott announced the cutting of commissions from 10% to 7%. Kalibri Labs released a study estimating that $1.3 billion in commissions was paid out to third parties. From the hotel’s perspective, this is not a lot of money compared to the overall value of a meeting and the bottom line to the hotel. Therefore, third party planners should try to work smarter and communicate with their clients what they are able to do. Relationships and communication are key in working through these challenging times.