The Planner’s Takeaways from MPI

By Angie Ahrens, June 21, 2018

As an industry show, Connect is under pressure to continue to deliver the best content, experience and innovation for you to bring back to your events and conferences. I recently attended MPI’s World Education Conference as not only a member, but one who is supportive of the idea to innovate and change what we do from an experiential point of view. Here are a few things I learned:

Change Happens

WEC tried a few new things, innovating and changing the way the show to be different. From villages (similar to what Connect does with lounges) to pep rallies (general sessions), I applaud the MPI team for taking risks. After all, industry shows take risks so that our attendees don’t have to. This confirms to me that Connect, who is also changing things up, is helping push our industry forward.

Indianapolis Is a Great City

The big shining star of the event was Indianapolis. From the hotels reaching out prior to the conference, the notes from the local MPI chapter in rooms and the closing party where attendees could ride on the track, Indy did a great job. As a former resident, Indy made me proud as they showcased a walkable, safe city with a great meeting package.

Learning is Driven by You

MPI changed up education to have a variety of time slots. We, too, tried this based on feedback from the audience, and it was great to see how people gravitated toward how they learn the best. Walking away with good content is what drives me, and I was happy to leave with a few nuggets of wisdom.

Overall, I applaud MPI for taking charge to change. Change is a scary world. But we need to continue to innovate as an industry to do so. I’m a big person on changing 25 percent of our event every year, but this year, we are changing much more than that. I hope you join us in Salt Lake City for the best Connect yet, change and all, this August!


Angie AhrensAngie Ahrens, CMP, is senior director of meetings and events at Connect, overseeing the programming of all Connect events.

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