MPI’s 2017 European Meetings & Events Conference (EMEC) gathered more than 350 registered attendees excluding support staff, of which 89% from Europe, for over two days of education, connections and to experience the city.
Education has always been important at this conference, and there was a fair share of it. The opening session by Mónica Deza covered the upcoming social and economic changes which will impact marketing and events in a useful perspective on the evolutions meeting and event professionals have to take into account in an every changing world.
Other sessions covered topics like how to easily remember people’s names and how to “pitch” and make short catchy selling presentations of your concept, two concepts highly useful for event professionals. The conference also covered the concept of slow meetings, changes in trade show management by a large company (SAP), how to sell your hotel to meeting planners, and a review of the College of extraordinary experiences, one of the most innovative concepts in Europe today. Meeting design was also high on the agenda, including a specific event canvas workshop which lasted the whole day.
Beyond education, the two leading ideas were probably the importance of sharing moments with other attendees and of experiencing the destination, a key trend in a world always looking for more authenticity. These two ideas were behind the conference’s leading theme: the human side of meetings. They were managed thanks to a strong social programme, including a private visit to the stunning Alhambra, a dinner in a cortijo with the local host team dressed in typical Andalusian costumes, creating a high visual impact and transporting the attendees to the Andalusian world. To further experience the destination, the educational programme was shortened on Monday to make time for a gastronomic scavenger hunt in Granada, a great way to discover the destination. This was followed by a Spanish classic, the tapas tour.
Another classic of MPI’s EMC is Rendez Vous, the MPI Foundation’s fundraiser and networking event, that saw more than 200 attendees, raising over $16,000, confirming networking is a serious matter, but that a bit of fun also goes a long way to get people to connect.
The event also included for the third time a Hosted Buyer Programme, which included 18 suppliers and 22 planners. Moreover the association launched the MPI Academy’s new Women In Leadership Program, which had 8 participants.
Last but not least: the event was certified by eventsost, confirming the importance of sustainability management in our industry’s events.