Interesting to follow the story of poor business management decisions made by the General Services Administration (GSA) in conducting a meeting, as well as some of the industry reaction. I certainly do not see the executive resignation and terminations as condemnation of the meeting industry or meetings and events as ineffective business vehicles.
As a meeting professional, I see it as a reminder that as professionals we are accountable for our actions and compliance with the established policies of our employer or client—and also for the exercise of sound professional judgment with personal integrity. And if we make poor personal choices, we have to face the consequences—which is clearly the case here. I am comforted that our members, and in fact the vast, vast majority of meeting and event professionals everywhere, do not exercise the type of poor professional and personal judgment noted as facts in the proceedings.
As a taxpayer, I am further comforted that the government has the necessary systems and policies in-place to ensure compliance is monitored.
As MPI completes its research into the Business Value of Meetings and complementing tools that will help planners measure their success (due out at AIBTM June 19-21 in Baltimore), it's more important than ever to insist that meetings like the one in 2010 are simply no longer acceptable (if they ever were at all). The final step to proving the business value of your events in analysis and reporting, at which point you find out whether or not your goals were accomplished, and why. This stage is critical for ongoing improvement and success, and a step it is clear the GSA never considered. Here is a list to current MPI resources that will help you prove the value of your events.
Business Value of Meetings
The Value of Virtual Events
The Future of Meetings
Perception vs. Reality
Defining Your Objectives
Analysis and Reporting
Fear of Measurement
Show Me the Value
The Case for Change
Business Value of Meetings Research Part 1
Business Value of Meetings Research Part 2
Business Value of Meetings Research Part 3
Business Value of Meetings Research Part 4