In The Name of Meetings

In the wake of AIG, meeting professionals have taken a hit, if not in bottom line, in image. It’s been incredibly encouraging to see meeting professionals uniting in the name of not only protecting their livelihood, but also promoting the importance of meetings as an integral part of America.

With over 5,000 signatures and as a feature at more than seven events, THE WALL (sponsored by Krisam Group and Global Events Partners) standsTHE WALL eight feet tall and 48 feet long and serves as a signature board and petition to the government and the media promoting the power and presence of meetings.

Beth Hamiroune, Vice President of Sales for Krisam Group and Global Event Partners and visionary behind THE WALL, said of her endeavor, “I want to send the President the biggest, boldest message, so he hears us.”

Endorsed by both MPI and the U.S. Travel Association, THE WALL panels read:

Dear Mr. President,
It is a monumental time and we have a bold message for Washington…
On the matter of meetings…meetings matter.
Meetings are a part of the solution, not the problem.

If only more people knew. If only more people knew that for every dollar invested in business travel, companies realize $12.50 in incremental revenue (according to www.meetingsmeanbusiness.com).

Also in the news, Senators Reid (D-NV), Ensign (R-NV), Martinez (R-FL), and Nelson (D-FL) have introduced Senate Bill 1530, “Protecting Resort Cities from Discrimination Act of 2009” to keep destinations like Las Vegas and Orlando from taking any further hits.

Keep America Meeting! has an online petition, and is also partnered with the US Travel Association. Their web site proclaims, “Meetings and events enhance employee and partner performance, fuel company growth and profitability, support the needs of local communities, and aid the American economy.”  

My question is this: Will these efforts make a difference? I often wonder if we will become a country so concerned about image that we forget to value quality. Please, tell us what you think.

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3 Comments

Filed under Industry Takes

3 responses to “In The Name of Meetings

  1. Thank you for highlighting the THE WALL in your blog today. Every ounce of awareness we can generate matters; to companies that are trying to grow, to leaders that are trying to lead and to workers who are trying to work. We are at a critical juncture, and must unite our industry and continue to strive to communicate the overall value of meetings not just among ourselves or within our companies but to the greater population. Perhaps then, image and quality will settle back into a more balance state. Thanks again for your effort…

  2. Meg Hasten

    Beth–I completely agree that awareness is going to be the driver for change, and it needs to reach beyond our own offices. Great point. Continued luck with THE WALL!

  3. Lots of people write about this issue but you wrote down some true words!!

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