The number one reason people go to conferences (yes - even at conferences ABOUT conferences) is networking, and I have to say that the connections I made were warm, friendly, and, like myself, cared a lot about the future of our industry.
What really caught my attention, though, was the shift in focus to 1) Mindfulness and 2) Play.
This is super exciting for me personally, since one of my most successful keynotes happens to be called ‘The Power of Play’ and one of my cornerstones as a conference MC/learning coach is encouraging the participants to be present and mindful throughout the entire program.
It was my first time at IMEX both as an attendee and as a speaker. I arrived early on Monday so I could take part in the MPI Education Day (which was great!) but I was quickly sucked into the PLAY ROOM with Play with a Purpose (kindred spirits for sure!) and the MEDITATION ROOM (Lee Papa Rocks!).
It’s really exciting to see that the principles my company, Engagement Unlimited, lives by are being embraced on such a large scale. Our Best Conference Ever Roadmap is a great example of how important play and mindfulness/intention are if you want to create engagement both WITH and BETWEEN your participants.
And we ALL want to heighten engagement at our meetings and conferences. It’s the secret sauce that makes things magical and powerful!
I spent the rest of the conference wandering the trade show floor, catching up with old friends and going to see as many speakers as I could. I was also ecstatic to lead 2 educational sessions on Wednesday – Pressure Cooker Confidence and The Power of Play.
Next year I want to bring more members of our team along – I can’t wait to unleash Heather Pelletier, our Director of Sales and Marketing, on to that tradeshow floor.
Until next year, IMEX-ers!
- Tahira Endean: Thank you for always showing such incredible support (3rd paragraph down). You are a wonder :)
- Sue Pelletier: my new best friend! Thank you for your blog/article: getting-playful-imex15 on The Power of Play
- Jenny Stanfield: Engagement Unlimited’s Lead Event Producer just won the PCMA 20 in their 20's award! Congrats Jenny! You are amazing!