Q: what lessons have you learned from planning or attending an overseas convention?Q: What lessons have you learned from planning or attending an overseas convention?
From attending an international meeting, I learned the value of participant-friendly formats. In 2001, I attended the Migrant and Seasonal Farmworker Health Meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico San Juan (IPA: [saŋ hwaŋ]) (from the Spanish San Juan Bautista, "Saint John the Baptist") is the capital and largest municipality on Puerto Rico. . The participant-friendly format allowed for a) shorter meeting segments; b) varied break durations (e.g., 20 minute, 45 minute); and c) time within the meeting for sightseeing.
Many of my colleagues around the country complain that long days leave little time to enjoy the meeting city, this is compounded by requests for additional meetings before or after the formal meeting. Formats similar to the one used in San Juan San Juan, city, Argentina
San Juan (săn wän, Span. sän hwän), city (1991 pop. 353,476), capital of San Juan prov., W Argentina. It is a commercial and industrial center in an agricultural region. can help add some relaxation to the meeting experience before we must hurry back to our hectic lives at home base. Besides, people who attend meetings day in and day out Adv. 1. day in and day out - without respite; "he plays chess day in and day out"
all the time often stagnate stag·nate
intr.v. stag·nat·ed, stag·nat·ing, stag·nates
To be or become stagnant.
[Latin st after sitting more than two or three hours.
Greta J. Shepherd-Stewart Executive Director, Oklahoma Primary Care Association, Oklahoma City Oklahoma City (1990 pop. 444,719), state capital, and seat of Oklahoma co., central Okla., on the North Canadian River; inc. 1890. The state's largest city, it is an important livestock market, a wholesale, distribution, industrial, and financial center, and a farm ; firstname.lastname@example.org
It's going to be a lot harder than you ever expected, due in large part to cultural differences that are hard to anticipate on a first, second, and third meeting. It's also going to be a lot more expensive than you ever expected or planned for. And lastly, pack your own medicines. They might not be readily available where you're going.
Donald A. Harris, CAE (1) (Computer-Aided Engineering) Software that analyzes designs which have been created in the computer or that have been created elsewhere and entered into the computer. CEO (1) (Chief Executive Officer) The highest individual in command of an organization. Typically the president of the company, the CEO reports to the Chairman of the Board. , Barbershop Harmony Society The Barbershop Harmony Society, legally and historically named the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, Inc. (SPEBSQSA), was the first of several organizations to promote and preserve barbershop music as an art form. , Kenosha, Wisconsin; email@example.com
Never make the mistake of assuming that there is only one way of planning a meeting and not taking the time to learn and understand the people and customs of the country you will be visiting. Each country has unique customs. They use different terminology, have different labor situations, and are usually much more formal than Americans. While I don't believe that you must become totally immersed in the culture of the country when planning a meeting, you must be willing to meet them halfway to have a successful event. Things that we give little or no consideration to such as dress, gift wrapping, and protocol are sometimes very important to our international counterparts.
So study and take to heart the customs of the country you will be visiting, and meet them halfway on business practices. You will have a much more successful event. And it would not hurt to learn a few words of their language.
Chris P. Vranas, CAE Executive Director, American Association of Orthodontists The American Association of Orthodontists, or AAO, is an American advocate group for orthodontists. Most American orthodontists, about 95 percent, are members. They are also dentists and are members of the American Dental Association. , St. Louis; firstname.lastname@example.org
Attending overseas conventions can be an eye-opener and often an ego boost for our meetings. I've found overseas meetings not always as well organized, at least in our industry, as are our own. In addition, overseas meetings usually mean multiple hotels, even for relatively small gatherings, and this would not be tolerated in North America where there's an abundance of large, self-contained conference hotels. Interestingly, this rarely becomes an issue because small citywide meetings are the custom overseas.
C. James Trombino, CAE Executive Director and CEO, Metal Powder Industries Federation, Princeton, New Jersey
Princeton, New Jersey is located in Mercer County, New Jersey, United States. Princeton University has been sited in the town since 1756. ; email@example.com
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