Almost 1000 business events professionals from more than 15 countries gathered for 2019 PCMA EduCon in Los Angeles, setting a record for the organisation’s event.
Hosted by Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board, this year’s event was held at the JW Marriott Los Angeles LA LIVE, with a program featuring experiential learning formats and learning ‘studios’.
“We carried the ‘Disrupt + Deliver’ theme introduced in January at Convening Leaders to EduCon as business events participants continue to seek unique experiences and innovations to help them with their respective audiences and sectors,” said Sherrif Karamat, PCMA president and CEO.
“PCMA continues to challenge the status quo in our event design, research and engagement platforms so our community can learn, challenge and gain greater insights, and we received a positive response in the largest turnout ever for EduCon.
“Our focus is relentless on the value our audience seeks and at the same time raise the profile of the critical role business events organisers have in driving organisational success and economic good.”
EduCon attendees also participated in a “Hackathon” competition to help develop a solution for unsheltered homeless individuals. The “Hospitality Roundup” team won for their proposal to prevent homelessness in the hospitality community by raising awareness about housing insecurity within the industry, and providing services including child-care, job training and medical-care assistance. Funds supporting those efforts would be raised by asking hotel guests and restaurant patrons to round their bills to the nearest dollar.
Other social impact events included assembling toiletry kits for local homeless women, a 5K Fun Run with the Skid Row Running Club of Los Angeles, Namaste with PCMA Yoga and the Give Back Bash. Proceeds from EduCon social impact events supported Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles, Skid Row Running Club and PCMA Foundation’s initiatives for the business events industry.
The 2019 EduCon program organised education content into four studios designed to suit different learning styles: Collaboration, Deep Dive, Fresh Look and True Stories. After-chat sessions allowed participants to continue conversations with select speakers and outdoor education provided a different learning environment. The “F-Stage” boxing ring showcased personal experiences of turning failure into success.
“We do not share and celebrate failure enough,” said moderator Juliano Lissoni, managing director of the MCI Group Canada. “It cannot be separated from innovation.”