With more than 10,000 industry professionals who support and conduct exhibitions globally, The International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) forms a strong synergistic group of individuals. The endless networking and educational opportunities IAEE provides its members have lead many at Messe Frankfurt North America to get involved.
Over the years, Messe Frankfurt has been very active not only within the IAEE Southeastern Chapter but also on the national level. This year has been very exciting for us and IAEE SE, with our very own Chris Pendley joining the Board of Directors for The Southeastern Chapter of IAEE, co-directing the Young Professionals Committee of IAEESE. The YPs of IAEE makeup a large group of like-minded professionals that are immersed in the events and trade show industry.
Chris’ first project was a luncheon in April called “Young Professional Spotlight,” co-organized with fellow YP Chair, Shyanne Robinson. The event focused on breaking the barriers between different age groups in the workplace, featuring young professional panelists from different sectors of the business and discussed the challenges millennials face in the events industry. Attendees of different age groups were encouraged to ask questions that they are often afraid to ask millennials, and vice versa.
Along with regular luncheons, IAEE YPs across the nation collect regularly for YP meetups. The last Southeastern YP meetup in August was one of the biggest yet, with nearly 40 YPS in attendance at an Atlanta venue which included Bowling, Giant Jenga and Bocce Ball for entertainment. The consistency of these events and the value they provide to YPs have grown over the past year and plans for even bigger and better meetups are already in the works. In fact, the IAEE SE YP will have another National Meetup on November 15, 2017.
The popularity of the most recent YP event may be contributed to the free Expo! Expo! Ticket awarded through a raffle drawing. The lucky winner of the YP raffle was Melissa Feraudo, a member of the Georgia State University Chapter of IAEE. Melissa was more than thrilled for her free ticket. Expo! Expo! Is THE event for the exhibition and events industry. This year it will be held in San Antonio, Texas during the last week of November and has built up a lot of anticipation among attendees. The Messe Frankfurt roster for this year’s Expo! Expo! is all set and ready for San Antonio. They are all going to be first-timers and are excited to get a taste of what their industry is all about.
In additional effort to incorporate more young professionals and increase their knowledge of the Industry, Chris Pendley and Messe Frankfurt North America’s Co-president Dennis Smith visited the Georgia State IAEESE Student Chapter earlier this year for a roundtable discussion. Dennis and Chris spoke about the association, Industry trends and shared some valuable insight into what key roles Messe Frankfurt plays in the industry. They also spoke about the economic impact of the industry and its role in facilitating business and relationships between buyers and sellers and emphasized the ways in which students can get involved. Katie Branch, the Student IAEESE President, happily reported that “they were very engaging and our students definitely learned a lot!”
In June, IAEE SE held its annual Classic in Myrtle Beach, SC. Three of Messe Frankfurt’s young professionals joined the Classic to learn more about the association, industry and forged meaningful bonds with other IAEE SE members. The 3-day conference was filled with educational sessions, team building exercises, and networking activities over several great meals. The highlight of the event was the keynote speaker, Matt Mayberry who ended the Classic with a remarkable and inspiring speech on setting goals and learning strategies on how to pursue them.
The members of IAEE each contribute to this fast-paced industry bringing buyers and sellers together and providing information, education and face-to-face opportunities to build business relationships. The support IAEE provides those members is invaluable and as the economic benefit of our industry reaches new heights, the need for associations like IAEE are more necessary than ever. Advocacy, leadership, connection, education, and community are just a few things to gain from IAEE. Messe Frankfurt will continue to support the association and expects to gain much more opportunities from the benefits IAEE provides.