MMBC has brought together a diverse group of organizations that represent the full breadth and depth of the meetings industry to speak with one united voice. This is critical as we continue to promote the industry’s value and ensure it is well understood among business leaders, policymakers, and communities across the globe. In the U.S. alone, the industry supports 5.9 million jobs and generates an annual economic impact of $845 billion.
As the Chair of the MPI International Board of Directors in 2008/2009, the meeting that I’m most proud of, was in fact, the meeting that led to the development of the MMBC. The MPI/PEC conference in Atlanta was in January of 2009 and the meetings industry had endured four months of unprecedented attack basically characterizing all meetings as “junkets and boondoggles” by people in influential positions that really didn’t understand our business. We were experiencing cancellations of meetings at record levels and the negative rhetoric was out of control. We took the stage at the MPI/PEC with powerful industry voices (Roger Dow, Christine Duffy, along with leaders from all of the industry organizations) and we proudly declared the meetings and events industry as the most crucial marketing vehicle available to business, communities, and charities. We were armed with key data points that had an immediate impact on policymakers (our influence on taxes and jobs) and the business community (every $1 spent on a meeting/event had a $12.50 return). It was our rally cry for the meetings industry that has taught us a valuable lesson to sustain our energy in communicating the vital role of face to face in the very fabric of our society.
Visit http://meetingsmeanbusiness.com/gmid for information on Global Meetings Industry Day.