To the Point

Catching Up

Here are some things to keep in mind during this back-to-school season.

So many of us were in and out of the office in August as we traveled to the many industry events and/or tried to squeeze in a summer vacation. I hope these trips allowed you torecharge your batteries and reconnect with family, friends, and peers. I know I thoroughly enjoyed several opportunities to travel and visit with industry colleagues in the last 30 days, during meetings with the Singapore Tourism Bureau in Singapore, and while participating in DMAI’s Annual Convention in Minneapolis, and ASAE’s Annual Meeting & Expo in Salt Lake City.

As you settle into your more-routine work schedule this month, here are some thoughts to help you get caught up.

Work piled up? Ask productivity experts, and they’ll tell you: Multitasking is out, meditating is in. Even if you can’t dedicate hours to “ohms,” there are many benefits in taking breaks throughout the day. Pressing the pause button between tasks or temporarily letting go of a vexing problem will make you much more productive in the long run than going at it nonstop all the time.

Then there’s the No. 1 factor affecting work productivity — a bad night’s sleep. According to a recent survey conducted by HSS Hire in the U.K., a lack of shut-eye trumps even talkative coworkers and technology problems. But there is a silver lining: While you may not be able to control the people who work around you, you can — most of the time — control how much sleep you get.

Haven’t kept up with recent industry developments? Here’s a brief recap: The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) reported that China overtook the United States as the world’s largest business-travel market for the first time in 2015. Also, the International Congress and Convention Association’s (ICCA) latest rankings of international meeting destinations introduced a new city to its No. 1 spot: Berlin.

On another front, we’ll soon benefit from industry-wide security standards that all meetings and exhibition venues can use in the event of terrorism or other threats to attendee safety. The International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) announced it is partnering with the Exhibition Services & Contractors Association (ESCA) to develop security standards that comply with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Safety Act Office.

Want to work smarter and make even more of an impact? Yes, you probably just got back to the office. But it’s not too soon to be making plans to attend PCMA’s Convening Leaders 2017: Designing CoLABoration — Jan. 8–11 in Austin, Texas. This is your prime opportunity to experience new meeting design and innovations firsthand — remember, we take risks so that you don’t have to. You’ll also get to learn from and exchange ideas with high-caliber industry peers from around the world (see left for more)..

Prepping for CL 2017

Will we still be talking about Pokémon Go at Convening Leaders 2017? Yes, if you want to. Attendees can expect more on-the-spot crowdsourcing of discussion topics, and we always leave room in our program to add new issues that crop up in the weeks leading up to the event. With that said, we are putting into place major pieces of the education and experience components. To whet your appetite, check out Digital Editor Kate Mulcrone’s interview with Convening Leaders speaker and influential economist Jeremy Rifkin.

Deborah Sexton

Deborah Sexton is president and CEO of PCMA.