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IMEX: Appetite for ‘Me Time’

IMEX: Appetite for ‘Me Time’

“I’ve been to IMEX for the last six years but mostly concentrating on doing business only. This year I decided to take some time for myself. It’s great not to have to hurry. I can enjoy more time to talk to people and really make this day work for me.”

This feeling of freedom to learn and connect was the overwhelming sentiment with the people who took part in the first ever IMEX in Frankurt EduMonday programme.

Designed to be more relaxed yet highly “serious” about uniting and advancing the industry through rich knowledge sharing, EduMonday was a major new IMEX education initiative that featured top experts from The Event Design Collective, The German Convention Bureau, Meetology® Masterclasses, Play with a Purpose, Zeus and more.

Reflecting on the value of EduMonday, Rick Taylor, CEO of the Business Tourism Company based in South Africa exclaimed, “This is a great Innovation. The mix of formal and informal learning is excellent.  Bringing all this education together here is a wonderful formula for the future.”

In addition to this inaugural event, perennial Monday favourites PCMA Business School, Association Day and Exclusively Corporate also returned to round out an energy-packed start to the IMEX week.

Power to the Planner – Choice & Customisation

Whether they were hungry to learn about design, technology, trends, association best practices, or C-Suite opportunities EduMonday was there to satisfy.

Those taking part in the sold out Event Design Certificate Programme with the Event Design Collective, walked away with not only hands-on skills for mapping the pains, gains and promises of their events and conferences, but also with an #EventCanvas Level 1 Certificate of Participation.

Research on the unique priorities and pressing drivers facing association meeting professionals around the world led to this year’s re-designed Association Day. Three, globally sensitive education streams featured chairs from ASAE, ICCA and MCI. They tackled everything from how to steer through turbulent times, membership engagement excellence, and content creation approaches … to sponsorship strategies, sustainability planning, and how to best leverage convention bureau relationships.

Konrad Klöckner who runs conferences for the computer science association Euromicro in Germany commented on the revamped approach, “I like the new Association Day schedule. It covers valuable ‘bread and butter’ subjects and is full of good practical hints and tips.  I was at a table with delegates from China, South Africa and France who faced similar challenges and we shared experiences and advice. It’s great to do this.”

VW Buses, Brain Food & Behavioural Science Hacks Bring Fresh Perspective

Meanwhile, the Zeus EventTech Academy focused on digital transformation with presentations delivered by German start-ups and companies such as Space Base, heycater!, EventMobi and more.  Throughout the week Zeus and others will also continue to shed innovation light with presentations and campfire-like chats in a fresh and fun space close to the Hosted Buyer lounge.  Complete with deep cushioned wooden palette sofas, string lights, a ping pong table, music and a vintage VW Bus, this hip corner will evoke a festival vibe.

Commenting on the discussions at the Zeus Academy,  Silke Hoersch, Director of Marketing, EMEA at Ungerboeck Systems International said, “The digital transformation has arrived in the event sector however, there are clear international differences in terms of openness and willingness to use new technologies.”

Featuring healthy brain food snacks and nourishing learning, Exclusively Corporate, was an idea and network-rich afternoon for senior industry players who enjoyed a programme crafted around the theme of “Engage your Brain”. Top and emerging destinations and trends, security, format evolution & revolution, demystifying tech and global meetings were topics to be taken in as learners customized their days and power networked.

“Exclusively Corporate has opened up a world of new contacts—it’s really useful to be able to connect with others in a similar position to you,” said Stephanie Linti-Mclean, Senior Event Manager, Fidelty International.  Nicola Briggs, Events Coordinator at EY added “I’ve enjoyed being able to mix and match the sessions to suit my requirements,” and Svetlana Mulyukina, LLC Sibur Business Services Centre shared “It has been a real day of discovery, hearing about new ideas and innovations.”

The satisfaction numbers from Exclusively Corporate are already in with a exit poll showing 100% would recommend the event to a friend with 86% learning something new and a full 100% learning or reinforcing knowledge.

Finally, people gravitated to PCMA Business School synching their minds with coach and author Tremaine du Preez on how to avoid behavioural stumbling blocks that can prevent us from making good decisions.

“The world is changing so rapidly and you have to take time to step out of your regular life and routine to gain exposure to new ideas… to grow … to take your business to the next level,” said 20-year event veteran Raju Mane, Associate VP MICE at Thomas Cook. “We’re about to embark on a new leadership program in August so I’m very interested in talking to Tremaine about that.”

At the end of the inaugural EduMonday participants lifted glasses and their networking smiles at a Happy Hour event with many continuing to SITE Nite Europe.

For a highlight reel of EduMonday visit: