Strategic meetings management is a disciplined approach to managing enterprise-wide meeting and event activities, processes, suppliers and data in order to achieve measurable business objectives that align with the organizations’ strategic goals/vision and deliver value in the form of quantitative savings, risk mitigation and service quality.
The above is the definition of Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) by MPI and GBTA. Still, every organization has a different way of seeing SMM and utilizing it. There are certain things that are great to start with though, like asking all the right questions. Who, what, when, where and most importantly why. Understanding what are the goals helps to keep the meeting on right track and also the management more invested in its results. Naturally you do also need the project leader who owns the project.
Be clear about setting goals based on the questions asked earlier in the process. Common goals have to do with cost management and risk reduction. The financial challenges have caused the focus on these areas and thus the shift to a more strategic approach. This also means that technology will play an important part in the planning process. That includes determining what technology will deliver in order to achieve the set goals.
Getting those policies and procedures around SMM in place will make it significantly easier to keep on measuring the effects of it. Having those procedures in place isn't enough by itself. They need to be frequently reviewed.
MPI's SMM Research will delve deeper into the "How To" on Strategic Meetings Management and is complimentary to all MPI members. To get you started with SMM, here is MPI's SMM Online Library of Resources.
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