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Featured Article
Top Career Management Tips To Make Your 2013 Shine
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December 17, 2012

In This Issue

Featured Article
CMP Events
Global Perspective
CMP Program News
Industry News
On The Move

By Dawn Rasmussen, CMP

But if you really want to come up with some truly attainable goals for 2013, here are the top five ideas that you can accomplish easily in the coming year... and will help you kick start your career in the right direction.

1) Reach out to five top thought leaders. Reaching out to someone doesn’t mean that you make them your mentor. It can be simply asking them a question. Following them on Twitter. Responding to an article they wrote. Whatever the tactic, making that connection to a thought leader can help you sharpen your thinking and change your perspective on your work. Ever run across a radically new idea that you were able to put into action in work... and realize incredible results? This is a mind exercise to help you build your mental acuity and leadership. What you learn from engaging with thought leaders will leave you never thinking the same again.

2) Start a career management file. Tried to update your résumé lately? Most job seekers, as soon as they land in their next position, totally forget to keep track of their accomplishments. Then, if a sudden opportunity comes up, or the unthinkable happens, they are left trying to jam a résumé update into a very short period of time. And the worst part is trying to remember what in the world you did in the past five years. Try this instead: create a computer or hard file that you toss EVERTHING that relates to staff reports, plan of work, recaps, metrics, kudos, professional development classes, memberships, and awards into... and what you now have is a quick and handy reference for the next résumé update. No racking your brain up on that one. Oh, and by the way, make sure you update your résumé every year... better yet, every six months!

3) Sign up for three new professional development activities. You’ve got your CMP – check. But now, try to strategically think about what you could do to solve the following: skill gaps, skill updates, or getting ahead of the proverbial "8-ball" and getting into the cutting edge knowledge. Make a goal of learning at least a few new things that you can integrate in your work. It’ll make your job easier, and your boss will definitely notice!

4) Start sharing information. Going to a conference? Great. We often walk out of the many useful and informative conferences with our heads bursting with ideas. Very few percolate into the workplace, but here’s a great idea to boost your career management IQ: share the takeaways with your team. Knowledge sharing is a hot concept now, and if you can pull together a short recap of what you learned and potential applications in the workplace, that helps educate your coworkers while increasing the odds that one or more of the ideas might actually be implemented. Supervisors like this because what you learned is strengthening the team’s ability to do the work.

5) Take a "stretch" assignment. Today’s economy has meant a lot of us are doing the jobs of one, two, three or more people in addition to our regular activities. But sometimes, a "stretch" assignment pops up. Don’t be afraid to take this on... not only can you learn new things, you can also test ideas and concepts you may have already known but never put into use. Additionally, you could get exposed to a different work group, therefore exposing yourself to new ideas while growing your skill sets. Bosses tend to notice workers who take these stretch assignments and see these employees as ones who demonstrate initiative. And that can be a good case for promoting you!

Think proactively about your career in 2013 by understanding that everything you do, every minute of every day, adds into the bigger picture of who you are, what people think of you, and what opportunities come your way. Take the new year as an opportunity to work on YOU and help build up career momentum.

CMP Events
2013 CMP Conclave

Don't miss your opportunity to participate in two and a half days of cutting edge continuing education and exam development. Save almost 20% by registering now!

Early Bird Registration: $325 USD (Now - February 15, 2013)

Regular Registration: $399 USD (February 16, 2013 - June 8, 2013)

For more information on Conclave and to register please visit, CMP Conclave.

Plano CVB
It's not to late to recertify

Recertification applications are due by December 31st and the fee is $250. Please make sure that your application reaches the CIC office by December 31st to prevent your CMP status from lapsing. If your CMP is currently in a lapsed status it's not too late to get it back to a current status. Submit your recertification application and the $350 lapsed fee to bring your CMP status back to good standing.

Also, any CMP who obtained their certification in 2008 or who last certified in 2008, your certification is due in 2013. It’s just around the corner so make sure that you get your continuing education hours together so that you can recertify. The fees are tiered, so the earlier you get your application in, the lower the fee will be.

If you have any questions about recertification, please check out our recertification video, our recertification tips or contact CIC at or by phone at 571-327-3116.

Global Perspective
The Global Evolution of the CMP
I have the privilege of representing the global community on the CMP Board of Directors, in addition to my paid job as the Meetings Industry Executive director at the Mexico Tourism Board. As we approach the end of the year, I would like to take this opportunity to offer some reflections about the importance of the CMP credential especially outside of the US meeting industry landscape.

When I give my business card to someone in my country that is not related to our industry (sometimes even in the industry) he or she immediately asks, "What are those letters after your last name? Aren't you becoming very 'American' in your business language?"

When I explain the benefits of going through the certification process, being able to use those letters proudly to connect with players both from the demand and supply side in the meetings world; then their faces and expressions change. 

The Convention Industry Council has been doing an extremely good job in making the process, the exam, the study materials and the availability of the credential more global. Examples of these steps are the change of US English to International English in all materials; the evolution to a computer-based testing with locations all over the world; the appointment of regional CMP representatives in areas such as Latin America, South Africa, Asia-Pacific, and North America; and partnership and collaboration with other official standardization institutions in other countries to apply the best practices. 

However, I think we still have a cultural problem as some of the misperceptions are: 
  1. That if someone is not pursuing US corporate business meetings then it is not needed to obtain the CMP 
  2. That all metrics, measurement criteria, logistics and calculations are based only in US parameters
  3. That it is very elementary and only for entry level professionals causing experienced professionals from other parts of the world to think they simply "don't need it" -- and of course without their positive influence, it is more difficult to promote it
  4. That the process and exams are very difficult , so if you are not a fluent English speaker it will be almost impossible to obtain the credential
In my opinion, those are only pretexts... going through a certification process in your career shows your commitment to the industry you represent, shows that you want to speak the professional language of the most demanding peers and shows that there is no limit to continuing to educate yourself even during your peak years of performance.

And the CMP is by far the most horizontal, comprehensive and applicable body of knowledge in this globally competitive profession.

I encourage all of my fellow CMP's around the world to become ambassadors of this high-level standard within your circles of influence.

Visit Orlando
Certified Meeting Professional - Correcting the Perception and Advocating the Strategic Importance of Certification

At their recent bi-annual meeting, the CIC Board of Directors approved a new strategic plan for CIC focused on advocating the value of events, promoting excellence in professional practices and leveraging the power of collaborative and collective action.

The meeting industry's most influential and respected leaders together mapped out a three-year plan and outlined initiatives to advance the profession and seize new opportunities for growth not just in North America but globally. The initiatives are broken into three categories: promoting excellence through certification and accreditation programs, creating a global voice for industry issues through strong partnerships and insuring that industry partners, government and the public have access to research and information that supports the value of meetings.

CIC's expansion of its certification program and membership globally over the last decade, has further enhanced the impact CIC has on the global meetings industry. Even as we have translated that strategic vision into reality, it's sometimes difficult to keep perceptions consistent around the world. In fact, a recent article in Association Meetings International (AMI) demonstrated that perceptions become reality for some, and it is important to correct misperceptions.

The article was entitled "Do Clients Have a Clue About CMP?" The article cast an unfair and inaccurate perception of the Certified Meeting Professional program—a designation that has been achieved by more than 14,000 meeting professionals worldwide over its 27 years of existence, has more than 10,000 CMPs currently active in the profession and approximately 1500 pursuing the certification at any given time.

Despite these lofty numbers, the article quotes only nine people, most of whom did not have their CMP. Only one lone CMP voice spoke on our behalf, and CIC was never contacted for interview or comment. Most of the opinions were that the CMP meant nothing to them personally or to those who hire planners or PCOs. The article did not represent a fair sampling of experts whose opinions represent the thousands who have completed the CMP program, the thousands who haven't, and the many employers who subsidize the CMP for their employees.

Had they asked, we could have provided access to our extensive research that supports the CMP program, validates its value, shows why meeting professionals covet the designation, and explains why many prominent industry companies require their convention service and sales teams to obtain their CMP. Research completed in 2011 and 2012 showed that:

  • 88.9 percent of CMPs find their certification important.
  • 88.8 percent say they are satisfied with their certification.
  • 86.8 percent seek their CMP to demonstrate professionalism.
  • 73.4 percent seek CMP to improve their marketability.
  • 50.9 percent seek CMP to advance their job or career.

The story notes that the CMP program is more familiar to the U.S. market. This is true, as it was started in the United States 27 years ago. However, as the most recognized and obtained certification in the world (other industry certifications do not come close to our numbers), the CMP has grown internationally, and we now have CMPs in 47 countries.

To meet that demand and to make the CMP content more global, CIC has spent significant resources over the past three years to make it more accessible to those outside the U.S. The move to computer-based testing this year was an important step, and every day we receive more and more requests from emerging meeting markets that know the CMP's value and reputation and want it for themselves.

The criticism we hear most often and that was perpetuated in this article, that the CMP is too North American to be of value to the rest of the world, is simply not true. The CMP assesses a candidate's knowledge of meeting management principles and competencies as determined by the CMP International Standard. These standards were developed through a job analysis by a panel of international meeting practitioners.

All of this, I pointed out to AMI in a letter to the editor. They responded with an acknowledgement that our letter had validity and perhaps they will publish it. We are ready and willing to give our perspective of the CMP supported by our data, and will be happy to provide CMPs to interview as well as employers who support their employees in pursuit of the CMP.

We need your help in spreading the good word about CMP as a credible global certification when others state it has no value. We will continue to make every effort to stay attuned to the needs of the industry and our CMPs and to make sure we are aligned with those needs. As always, we welcome your input.

Karen Kotowski, CAE, CMP

Lucky Strike Entertainment
CMP Program News
Welcome November 2012 CMP Class


CIC Manual 9th Edition Focus Group at IMEX Frankfurt
The Convention Industry Council (CIC) will be hosting a focus group at IMEX Frankfurt to solicit feedback on draft sections of the CIC Manual 9th Edition. The new edition of this cornerstone publication is being extensively revised and updated to incorporate changes to the CMP International Standards (CMP-IS), and is scheduled for release in October 2013.

Participants will be selected based on geographic diversity, experience within each of the 10 domains in the CMP-IS and availability. Participants will be required to sign a non-disclosure agreement if they are selected.

There is no charge for participation in this event. Each selected participant will receive a $50 USD American Express Gift Card. Alternatively, participants may opt to donate their card to a charity that will be selected by the CIC.

Participants will be responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses.

To apply to be a part of the focus group, please complete the following survey:

If you have any questions about the focus group, please contact Mariela McIlwraith, CMP, CMM, MBA
Executive Editor, CIC Manual 9th Edition,

Industry News
CIC Council Sets Strategic Direction - Approves Strategic Plan, Elects 2013 Board and Welcomes New Member


CEOs and representatives of the leading professional and trade associations in the meetings, conventions, exhibitions and events sector convened on November 12, 2012 for the annual meeting of the Convention Industry Council (CIC). At the meeting, the Board of Directors approved a new strategic plan focused on advocating the value of events, promoting excellence in professional practices and leveraging the power of collaborative and collective action. 

The meeting industry’s most influential and respected leaders together mapped out a three-year plan and outlined initiatives to advance the profession and seize new opportunities for growth. The initiatives are broken into three categories: promoting excellence through certification and accreditation programs, creating a global voice for industry issues through strong partnerships, and insuring that industry partners, government and the public have access to research and information that supports the value of meetings.

"The Convention Industry Council and Board of Directors worked together to formulate a series of exciting action plans to translate our strategic vision into reality, befitting the strength that comes from the collaboration of all of our members from every segment of the meetings industry," said Fran Rickenbach, CAE, IOM, Executive Vice President, Association of Destination Management Executives International and newly elected chair of the CIC Board of Directors. "CIC’s expansion of certification programs and membership, as well as the synergy of the collective research efforts of both CIC and its members, will further enhance the impact CIC has on the global meetings industry."

The CIC board also welcomed Convention Sales Professionals International as CIC newest member.  Convention Sales Professionals International (CSPI), formerly the Association for Convention Sales and Marketing Executives, is dedicated to fostering a spirit of collaborative success between convention center sales professionals and their convention sales counterparts at regional destination marketing organizations (DMOs).

"The new strategic plan defines a vision for CIC and charts a course for the future," said Karen Kotowski, CAE, CMP and Convention Industry Council’s Chief Executive Officer.  "As we continue to work with the board to define specific strategies and priorities, it will provide the staff the roadmap that we need to ensure we are delivering the value our members want."    

The CIC Council of Delegates also elected the 2013 leadership.  Members of the 2013 CIC Board of Directors include:


  • CHAIR: Fran Rickenbach, CAE, IOM, Executive Vice President, Association of Destination Management Executives International (ADMEI)
  • CHAIR-ELECT: Bob Gilbert, CHME, CHA , President & CEO, Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI)
  • IMMEDIATE PAST CHAIR: Stacy Tetschner, CAE, FASAE, CEO, National Speakers Association (NSA)

At-large Board Members Elected to Two-Year Term

  • Michael Gehrisch, President & CEO, Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI)
  • Vicki Hawarden, CMP, President & CEO, International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM)
  • Allison Summers, Managing Director, Site

At-large board members continuing for another year

  • Bonnie Fedchock, CAE, Executive Director, National Association of Catering Executives (NACE)
  • John Graham, IV, CAE, President & CEO, ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership
  • Tamara Kennedy-Hill, Executive Director, Green Meetings Industry Council (GMIC)


On The Move
CMPs On the Move

Elise Colson, CMP is now the Events Manager for The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, CA.

Pamela James, CMP is now a Senior Sales Manager with Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ

Donna Jarvis-Miller, CMP, CEM  is now the Associate Director, Meetings and Trade Shows with Meetings  Management Group in McLean, VA

Tina Wehmeir, CMP is now the Executive VIce President of the AMC Institute in Alexandria, VA

Make an awesome career move? Let us help you celebrate! Send the details of your latest career triumph to  And while you're at it, be sure to log into and update your official CMP record.


The Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) is a
program of the Convention Industry Council

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