Delivering Inspiration and Collaboration

2017 Convening Leaders Content Committee Co-Chairs Strive to Give PCMA Members the Tools to Be Effective and Successful

Robert Heard, CAE

Robert Heard, CAE

Every year, Convening Leaders covers a huge canvas, offering information to inspire, educate, and motivate. And making sure to hit on the most vital topics of the industry is just one of the program’s many goals, according to Robert Heard, CAE, associate executive director of membership and education for the American College of Emergency Physicians and co-chair of the 2017 Convening Leaders Content Committee (CLCC) — which is already thinking about next year’s PCMA annual meeting, slated for Austin, Texas, on Jan. 8-11, 2017.

“My desire is for our committee to deliver another stellar meeting that gives PCMA members the tools to be effective and successful in their work,” Heard said. “That includes finding new ideas and innovations to keep up with the changing dynamics of the meetings and convention business.”

Aida Campbell

Aida Campbell

Aida Campbell, director of strategic account management for Experient and Heard’s 2017 CLCC co-chair, added: “What Convening Leaders has always done so effectively is provide the meetings industry with a forum for attendees to network, benchmark, and collaboratively address the issues and challenges that we face. Learning has always taken place in both structured and organic ways at CL, and that’s a legacy that we hope to continue.”

Heard and Campbell are excited about their work as co-chairs, which includes gathering timely topics and potential speakers for Convening Leaders 2017.“We have a responsibility to prove the ROI to our respective organizations for investing in our training and development,” Heard said. “We want to be mindful of that, and ensure we deliver real educational and networking value for the investment attendees make in PCMA.”

Each year, there are highlights that the two industry veterans look forward to, from the educational sessions to the opportunities that present themselves during the inevitable downtime. “I always look forward to expanding and building my network of peers in this industry,” Heard said. “I especially enjoy meeting new up-and-coming leaders. Their eagerness to learn and drive to be the best is inspiring.”

Friends and colleagues are a large part of the draw for Campbell. “Because of that, Convening Leaders has been a must-attend event for me for the better part of the past decade,” she said. “Ideas are exchanged, people reconnect and prepare for the year ahead, and business and personal relationships are created and enhanced.”

Both Heard and Campbell expect attendees to walk away from Convening Leaders 2017 with inspired new ideas as well as a longer list of names in their contacts folder. “I hope every attendee will leave Convening Leaders with a list of great ideas applicable to their work, valuable insights into changing trends and issues in our industry, and a renewed enthusiasm and passion for what we do in the meetings industry,” Heard said. “I hope we can spark people’s imagination and confidence to experiment with new ideas to ensure our meetings industry continues to innovate.”