By Les Selby, CMP, CMM
On Oct. 3, the BEICC (Business Events Industry Coalition of Canada) held its First Annual Industry Night at the Intercontinental Toronto Centre Hotel.
The evening brought together reps of the coalition’s eight founding member associations, along with several interested industry professionals (including myself).
I want to compliment John Houghton, the executive VP of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, who originally suggested the phrase “Business Events Industry” to encompass all the facets of our vocation – meetings and events, trade shows, incentives, conventions and commercial gatherings.
The BEICC is probably best known for its involvement with TICO (Travel Industry Council of Ontario) last year and its work in defining the relationship between planners and the Ontario Travel Industry Act.
In truth, before the Industry Night, I was unaware of what the BEICC was doing now, nor that the group is working with regulators in other provinces to explain what the event industry is and to help define what guidelines might be reasonable.
The Industry Night featured an interesting presentation by trend expert Warren Evans, entitled “Future Trends That Affect The Business Events Industry.”
For many years, Warren has been a professional speaker, so he has witnessed how the events industry has changed over time.
Frequently humorous, Warren’s presentation accurately identified many of the issues professionals face today and suggested possible courses of action to help us increase the value we create for our clients, companies and/or members.
His presentation also acted as a starting point for those in attendance to identify and prioritize the actions they thought the BEICC should focus on.
I left the evening believing that the BEICC was concentrating on fulfilling its mission to represent the interests of the majority of Canadian business-event professionals.
I also felt that to be more successful (in advancing all of OUR interests), the BEICC needs to publicize its work more.
It was disappointing that representatives of the major industry publications did not attend Industry Night and that several associations like CSAE (Canadian Society of Association Executives) have not yet aligned themselves with the BEICC.
I think we should all be dedicated to raising the stature of our profession…and the BEICC may just be the group to unite all of us in our efforts.
For more info on the BEICC, visit their site