Featured Article
Convention Industry Council Exhibiting at IMEX America
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September 2014

In This Issue

Featured Article
CMP Events
CMP Program News
Industry News
CMP on the Road
On The Move
The Convention Industry Council (CIC) will be hosting a booth and participating in the hosted buyers program for the first time at the upcoming IMEX America being held at the Sands Expo® in Las Vegas October, 14-16. CIC will also be hosting a cocktail hour for CMPs on Wednesday, October 14, four campfire education sessions during the show and its 19th annual Hall of Leaders gala will be held Sunday, October 12, at the MGM Grand. 

IMEX America, the global trade show for international meetings, incentive travel and events industry, now in its fourth year, is fast becoming known as "the trade show with a difference." 

CIC will be showcasing the Certified Meeting Planner (CMP) program, as well as other projects and collaborations, including the CMP Health Care Subspecialty (CMP-HC), Meetings Industry Advocacy Hub and APEX’s Room Block Poaching Workgroup research in their booth during IMEX America. 

The CMP credential is globally recognized as the badge of excellence in the meeting, convention, exhibition, and event industry. The qualifications for certification are based on professional experience, education, and a rigorous exam. 
CIC continued to move the certification forward in 2014 by launching the 9th Edition of its manual, the first manual also offered as an e-book and the new Certified Meeting Professional – Healthcare (CMP-HC) designation. The CMP-HC is the industry’s first certification for healthcare meeting professionals. 

Attending IMEX America is a great way to accumulate the continuing education (CE) hours needed to apply for the CMP exam or for CMP recertification. CIC has reviewed all the CE activities offered at IMEX America and specified how many CE hours each activity is worth. CIC has also designated which of the 10 Domains in the CMP-IS the session aligns with. 

Campfire education sessions | Booth #212: 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014
11:30-12:00 | Room Block Poaching: It Could Happen to You

Wednesday, October 15, 2014
11:30-12:00 | Becoming a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) | Gayle Dahlman
14:30-15:00 | Help Promote the Importance of the Meetings Industry through Industry Advocacy Efforts | Karen Kotowski &           Roger Rickard

Thursday, October 16, 2014
11:30-12:00 | CIC’s New Healthcare Subspecialty | Gayle Dahlman

Make sure to stop by our booth for: 

CMP Cocktail Hour | 
Wednesday, October 16, 4:30-5:30 p.m. | Booth 212 
Please join CIC for a wine reception exclusively for CMPs! Mingle, network and laugh with other CMPs from all over the world with wine and snacks. We hope to see you there! RSVP to events@conventionindustry.org
CMP Events
2014 CMP Conclave in Review
The Convention Industry Council would first like to thank everyone who helped make the 2014 CMP Conclave, hosted in beautiful, historic New Orleans, Louisiana, September 6-8, such a success.

Boasting a registered attendance of more than 450 people, including international CMPs from several countries around the world, this was the highest attended CMP Conclave ever! Why Conclave? Because, as the only annual event exclusively for CMPs, it provides an opportunity for attendees to network, attend cutting-edge educational sessions designed to aid their professional development, and share their insights, questions and even concerns, among an inviting community of other CMPs. Last month, we gave you a brief preview of some of those educational sessions, and in this issue we will follow-up with an overview and some of takeaways from the conference.

With such a robust educational program, it was difficult for some attendees to decide which sessions they wanted to attend most. And while all of the sessions addressed a relevant interest to CMPs, the three highest rated educational sessions were: "Serve This, Not That" and "How Hotels Evaluate Your Business," and "How Modern Meetings Use Technology to Create Personalized Experience," lending credence to the issues that are at the forefront of the minds of our CMPs in the ever-changing meetings and events industry. This year’s Conclave also featured two off-site experiential learning sessions which garnered a great deal of interest from our attendees.

Speaking of technology, this year, CIC decided to make better use of technological advances and step further into the digital age in a couple of ways. We re-launched our Facebook page at last year’s Conclave and really took advantage of the growing community on that social network by creating an Event page, just for Conclave, where attendees, speakers and sponsors could share and communicate prior to (and at) the event. We continued the conversation on-site where we live tweeted a number of the sessions, activities and special events (search hashtag #cmp14 for a recap). For the second time, we used a Conclave event app, designed by EventMobi, to help organize all Conclave-related items (schedule, maps, speakers, presentations, photos, social media, attendee list, etc.) in one convenient online location. Attendees could open the app online or download it for free to any mobile device and have instant access to up-to-date Conclave details, both at and after the event. We also, for the first time, utilized the apps function to allow attendees to give session feedback in real time and share their thoughts with us while they were still fresh in their minds. 

Our keynote sessions were very well received and ran the gamut from The Watercoolers’ energetic and interactive performance, complete with a personalized  song just for CMPs, to lessons from Simon T. Bailey on "Releasing Your Leadership Brilliance," Kaplan Mobray’s "10Ks of Personal Branding," and Mary Matalin and James Carville’s take on "Love, War & Politics."

As you know, this year we partnered with Dress for Success New Orleans for our CSR activity and encouraged all Conclave attendees to bring any gently used suits and accessories to help women transitioning into the workplace. We received a great response and would like to thank everyone who donated an item of clothing or an accessory to help those in need.

To see photos from the event, provided to us by Christie’s Photography Studio, please visit our Facebook page – www.facebook.com/ConventionIndustryCouncil – connect with us there, tag your friends or yourselves and share your comments. 

We would like to offer another sincere thank you to our event partners, the Hyatt Regency New Orleans, the New Orleans CVB, House of Blues New Orleans and PSAV, and our event sponsors for helping making this CMP Conclave arguably the best one yet. If you haven’t done so already, please be sure to mark your calendars for the 2015 CMP Conclave, September 27-29 in Reno, Nevada! 

– Convention Industry Council 
Tropicana Casino
My First Conclave Experience

My name is Amanda Smith Rasnick, and I am the Group Sales Manager for Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands CVB located between Toledo and Cleveland. I have held my position for six years. Our destination is most well-known for Cedar Point Amusement Park, Kalahari Resort and the Lake Erie islands. I manage a sales team of three professionals, each with a distinct focus. My focus is on corporate, association, religious, and sports groups and events. I also hold the position of Director of Professional Development for Ohio MPI chapter; my main responsibility to Ohio MPI is directing the CMP program and the study sessions for those members seeking the CMP designation. I have had my CMP since 2013.

The table host said it didn’t matter; we are all CMP’s here. There was much excitement since I had not only recently obtained my CMP, but also accepted the position on the MPI Ohio board.  

In January, I attended the PCMA Convening Leaders in Boston, during which I had the opportunity to partake in the Convention Industry Council and AMC Institute’s networking reception. I was excited to be a part of the reception so that I could interact with other CMP holders, learn about their journeys to accreditation, and how receiving the CMP designation has been beneficial to their careers. As the reception came to a close door prize winners were being announced and, to my surprise, my name was called as the winner of the all-expenses paid trip to the Conclave (see photo). As a supplier, it is not very often that I am eligible to win during prize giveaways. I remember as business cards were collected at the entrance, I stated I was a supplier and probably wouldn't qualify. The table host said it didn’t matter; we are all CMP’s here. There was much excitement since I had not only recently obtained my CMP, but also accepted the position on the MPI Ohio board.  

Finally, September arrived and it was time for my first Conclave in the beautiful city of New Orleans. I was thrilled to be a part of it. During the luncheons, breaks and evening events, I was able to grow my professional network and build a relationships with many planners and suppliers, several of who I now consider friends and even enjoyed dining with on our free evening (see photo).

I had to choose my Conclave sessions very wisely to make sure the topics applied to my role at the CVB or as a member of the MPI board. As I reflect back, I feel that overall the experience was more applicable to the board position with MPI and as a CMP study group facilitator. During the roundtable for CMP study group facilitators, I met people who are struggling with the same issues I am experiencing, such as the changes with the new study manual and to the testing format. I have been in contact with several other facilitators since the conclusion of Conclave to continue the conversation.

I also attended sessions that were geared towards event planners in order to get a different perspective on the selection or booking process. I wish there had been a program on how the CMP is being used within the industry, which would be valuable because the reasons a planner obtains the certification are vastly different from those of a student and those of a supplier.  

Thanks CIC and New Orleans for a great Conclave! I will definitely be back.  
'CMP' Moments
The CIC Manual is chock full of detailed examples of the basic components of a successful meeting. It does a great job, but there is nothing like real world experience! 

In my eight years so far as an association meeting planner, the element of surprise never fails to amaze me. How I reacted to the following situations made the difference from being merely reactive to proactive and saving the day:

Post-BEO Heart Attack: In preparation for the Academic Surgical Congress meeting at the Encore & Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, I had plotted my food and beverage down to the nickel to satisfy the F&B minimum, but not go over my meeting budget. To the nickel! The Executive Council was throwing a Presidential Reception during the five-day meeting – always a crowd favorite. To save money, and due to the late hour of the reception (10 p.m.-midnight), the only food were mixed nuts to accompany the Premium Bar, trying to keep within my tight budget. I was on-hand to get the reception going, but seeing everything running smoothly, left for the evening to prepare for the next day’s slate of events.

Fast forward to the next day, and I’m reviewing the BEOs from the previous day. I noticed on the Presidential Reception BEO, that a very, VERY expensive cognac had been added to the bill! We’re talking $12,000! Surely there had been a mistake? 

After investigating all possible scenarios, it turns out a Board member had asked for this "gold standard" liquor, and the bartender, with his "anything to please the customer" attitude (the Wynn & Encore staff are fantastic in that way) assumed this was OK, and obliged the Board member. Remember, this is the hotel where they offer Louis XIII Black Pearl Cognac at $90,000 per bottle in their XS nightclub. What’s a mere few thousand dollars?

Needless to say, using honey in this situation with my hotel CSM, went a long way to resolving the issue. The charge was taken off our bill. The "virtual defibulator" was put away!

Volcanic Ill Wind: In April of 2010, our office had two international meetings scheduled, the SAWC/WHS in Orlando at the Gaylord Palms, and IHPBA World Congress at the Hilton Buenos Aires. Both meetings relied heavily on not only international attendees, but speakers and moderators. But Eyjafjallajökull, the Icelandic volcano that erupted during April 14-20, 2010 had other ideas! The ash cloud from that volcano virtually closed the European airspace for days, affecting 10 million travelers, including our guests. WHS Co-Chair Dr. Anie Philip of McGill University in Montreal, said, "It was a bit frantic, as we had no firm Plan B in place for missing speakers Dr. Sabine Ewing from France and Dr. Paul Martin from England. We pulled it off by organizing a Skype presentation with the slides and audio (could not do a video presentation). It was a great team effort.

The lesson learned: "Be prepared for the unforeseen!" 

Kim O’Dell, CMP, principal owner and Executive Director of O’Dell Group Management, and a veteran of international meetings, including the IHPBA meeting, said it best: "Weather always plays a part when planning an international meeting, but so do other factors. We were in Greece one year for a conference, where the next year there was unrest, so we anticipate problems for an International meeting. But the volcano impacting such a large amount of airspace was different. We reached out to alternative experts who were already in Buenos Aires to step up and help speak and moderate. Thank goodness we had the speaker power points ahead of time! Also, having proactive convention chairs, and meeting insurance was a major key!"

Arts & Crafts: Gift-giving is an important part of Japanese business protocol. When it was time to present the Japanese Society for Wound Healing (JSWH) contingent special WHS embossed padfolios during the opening Welcome Reception at the 2011 SAWC/WHS meeting in Dallas, spiffing up the wrapping was in order. I found gorgeous world maps at Sam Flax to use as wrapping paper, and to symbolize our international ties. The boxes were wrapped in color coordinated ribbon with silver 1" W, H & S initials glued onto the wrapping. Dr. Sadanori Akita, a Plastic Surgery professor from Nagasaki University said, "We were very moved to be welcomed by the WHS people for our scientific exchange in this way".

Other than my burnt fingers (glue guns hurt!) a lifelong positive impression was made!

Lyn Henderson, CMP, is an independent event and meeting planner based in Orlando, FL. She can be reached at lynbhenderson@gmail.com

CMP Today welcomes the voices and perspectives of our diverse community of CMPs. If you are interested in contributing an article for a future issue, please contact us as: cmptoday@conventionindustry.org
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CMP Program News
Welcome the New CMP Class!
Welcome the New CIC Meetings Manager, Marlene Goldman
Marlene Goldman comes to the Convention Industry Council with 20 years of experience as a meeting planner. Throughout her career, Marlene has planned and produced a wide range of meetings and events throughout the United States, Canada and several European countries for associations, for-profit companies and government agencies. As the meeting manager for CIC, she has the tremendous task of planning the CMP Conclave. 

1. You come to CIC with extensive experience as a meeting planner. What will be your main focus over the course of your first year at CIC, and how do you think your previous experiences will help you accomplish those things?

One focus over the next year will be to work with the education committee to develop the educational program of the 2015 CMP Conclave. As the saying goes, "content is king," so the education committee has the critical task of ensuring the most important topics are addressed and the best speakers participate. It was great to see the tremendous success of the 2014 education committee, and I’m looking forward to another great program next year. Another focus will be working to enrich current program staples and to develop new elements that add increased value for future Conclave attendees. Drawing on what I’ve learned throughout my career, both the good and the not-as-good, I anticipate being able to apply those lessons to my work at CIC and explore how some of the more successful ideas from other events can be incorporated at Conclave.

2. You just planned and executed your first CMP Conclave, the only annual event exclusively for certified meeting professionals. How was that experience different from other events you've worked on? 

Three things really stand-out. It was very exciting to see how engaged participants were with all elements of the program. The planning of the 2014 CMP Conclave brought together so many branches of the meeting and events community and everyone involved worked hard and contributed greatly to its success. And finally, everyone seemed genuinely excited to see each other. Conclave had all of the positive aspects of a large family reunion. 

3. What’s a typical day like for you? 

My typical day is probably a lot like the typical day of the planners who attended the CMP Conclave – we’re always looking for new avenues to increase the value proposition of our meetings and events. While it’s hard to delineate specific days, I can say in a typical week or month involves:
  • Receiving calls and emails from a wide range of vendors who want to introduce (and sell) their products and services. These need vetted to determine which should be explored further.
  • Keeping up with current technology trends and how they’re being adopted – or could be adopted – by the meeting and events industry.
  • Staying abreast of industry challenges and opportunities -- such as sustainability, room poaching and piracy, and political issues.
4. What can we look forward to for future Conclave events? 

It is critical that the content of future Conclave events maintain and/or exceed the current level of excellence. Conclave should also continue to serve as a model for other meetings and events. Specifically, this involves taking risks while trying new approaches, incorporating technology and social media, and testing new ideas. I want to work closely with the education committee, CMPs, partners and other members of the CIC staff to keep future Conclaves energized, fresh and fun.

5. Share something with us about yourself we wouldn’t be able to guess by looking at you.

For the past 10 years, I’ve been making jewelry, both beading and silversmithing. I love putting on goggles and using a blow-torch. I host beading workshops for my friends and take great pride in the pieces they create. You wouldn’t guess this by looking at me, but all the good stuff I make, I give away as presents and only wear minimal jewelry myself.
Industry News
CEIR Predict Conference: Trade Show Industry on Track for Positive Growth into 2015-2016

CMP on the Road
See Us At...
CIC Hall of Leaders & Pacesetter Awards Recognition Gala 2014
Sunday, October 12, 2014
6:00-9:30 p.m.
MGM Grand Hotel & Casino
Las Vegas, NV

Honoring: John Christison, Gary Sain and Patti Shock
Pacesetter Award Winners: Lindsay Arell and Donnell Bayot

More information

IMEX America
October 14-16, 2014
Las Vegas, NV

Campfire education sessions | Booth #212

Tuesday, October 14, 2014
11:30-12:00 | Room Block Poaching: It Could Happen to You

Wednesday, October 15, 2014
11:30-12:00 | Becoming a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) | Gayle Dahlman
14:30-15:00 | Help Promote the Importance of the Meetings Industry through Industry Advocacy Efforts | Karen Kotowski &           Roger Rickard

Thursday, October 16, 2014
11:30-12:00 | CIC’s New Healthcare Subspecialty | Gayle Dahlman

Special CMP Event: CMP Cocktail Hour | Booth 212 
Wednesday, October 16, 4:30-5:30 p.m. 
Please join CIC for a wine reception exclusively for CMPs! Mingle, network and laugh with other CMPs from all over the world with wine and snacks. We hope to see you there! RSVP to events@conventionindustry.org.

On The Move
CMPs on the Move
Laura Falacienski, CMP, is now Director, Event Operations at Bloomberg BNA.

Angela Kanazeh, CMP, CTA, is now the Membership Engagement Manager for the Michigan Association of School Boards.

Barbie LaCasto, CMP, is now Conference Center Sales Manager at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Florida.
She was previously an association meeting planner. 

Adrienne Tooley, CMP-HC, is now the Meeting & Event Manager for Koncept Events, LLC in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She was previously a Meetings Manager for Complete Conference Management in Miami, Florida.

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

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

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