5 minutes with PCMA’s innovation expert

Michelle Crowley, chief growth and innovation officer at the PCMA, is a keynote speaker at the AACB Annual Conference Destination Business Events which kicked off today. We spoke to her about what attendees can expect.

What can we expect from you at Destination Business Events? I’m excited to be delivering the keynote at Destination Business Events where I’ll be sharing outcomes from research supported by PCMA and Marriott International on the Future of Meetings and Events. It will be an interactive and collaborative session where participants will create ideas that can be implemented. I’m looking forward to seeing what we’ll generate.

How can events promote social progress? When people come together, ideas spark, experiences exchanged, and curiosity is heightened. All of these are ingredients for inspiration, innovation and collaboration particularly when those gathering are researchers, governments or other community leaders. The outcomes benefit not just industry, but communities. That’s where the social benefit becomes evident.

What’s your take on the health of the industry in the Asia Pacific region? Asia Pacific is a big region in terms of geography, culture, languages and government systems. Because of this, the business events industry is fragmented into different growth and maturity phases. At the same time, the region’s infrastructure is moving quickly in terms of development and modernization so there is recognition that business events create value for communities. This is where PCMA can help by providing the training to help the industry grow and to facilitate the business connections necessary for success.

What is the relationship between corporate and association meetings? Traditionally, these have been two groups with different purposes, but the lines are now blurring as customers are seeing them as the same. This has led to competition between corporations and associations as the attendee just want value and ease when doing business with either.

What educational areas are you most excited about? I get excited about observing what’s happening in other industries and determining what that means for business events. At PCMA, we evaluate how that translates into personal and professional development, organizational success and economic and social transformation and how we can provide education to support growth in each of those three areas.

How do you design education for different types of learners and cultures? As a global organisation, we are mindful that one size does not fit all, which is why we tailor our education to each region. And, we are deliberate in creating sessions that embrace listening, seeing and experience.