I can't believe it's already been a week since I was in Prague participating in the GBTA Europe Annual Conference. The attendees numbers were very solid and the content of the education was also nontraditional — which is great and no doubt influenced by the ever-creative Paul Tilstone, GBTA SVP, Global Operations. I really loved how the education agenda was European focused, and even though a few of the US speakers got a little US-centric in delivery and content, it was far less than what I've seen in the past.
As for me, it was a privilege to moderate the one and only SMMP session of the conference: Strategic Meetings Management – Does it Measure Up? I provided a global industry update then turned it over to leading SMMP Consultant, Betsy Bondurant, who gave an overview of SMM best practices. Then we featured two European case studies with Carole Poillerat, of AstraZeneca and Lotten Tegstam Welinder, of IKEA. Carole talked about her lessons learned from establishing an SMMP for Astra Zeneca, using the more traditional SMMP roadmap and best practices she collected from other companies. Lotten spoke about IKEA's philosophy towards meetings and their non-traditional approach to SMMP.
It was great to see travel buyer friends in Europe and to witness how much growth SMM has experienced in the region from the early days of when I would do European round tables to introduce and educate buyers about why they need SMM as part of their purchasing strategy and scorecards for performance. Congratulations GBTA for producing another great educational conference for the European marketplace.
Did you attend GBTA Europe? Please share your impressions and what you found most valuable.
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