Convene: Top 10 Stories from 2013

We’re ringing in the new year by looking back at some of our top stories from 2013. And if you’ve resolved in 2014 to work toward your CMP certification or recertification, good news. Half of them are part of our CMP series and can help you earn CEUs.

1.: “Failure, Sweet, Failure,” February

020113_convene_coverstoryIn some circles, failure isn’t a dirty word, but a predictable stop along the road toward mastery. Our story asks the question: Is getting real about what doesn’t work a new formula for success?

We talked to conference organizers and speakers about wise ways to use the lessons learned from failure to improve meeting education.

2. “Monitoring the Affordable Care Act,” April

“Uncertain” was a word that came up again and again when we asked medical meeting professionals about the changes the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) is bringing to the meeting space.  Things have only gotten more complicated since then.

3. CMP Series: “Designing Experience” with David Stark, May

Photo by Susan Montagna

Photo by Susan Montagna

NYC-based event designer David Stark is the creative force behind some of the most exclusive events in a city that’s known for being over-the-top.

But his work is not about decoration, the designer said.  “It’s about conceptually driving the ideas home so that the people understand why they’re there, and they’re emotionally struck by the issues that brought them there in the first place … It’s really about lassoing the power of art and the power of design to make a difference.”

4. “One on One with Condoleezza Rice,” June

As Susan Sarfati’s interview with Condoleezza Rice revealed, the former Secretary of State gets it about meetings. She had this to say about legislation cutting funding for conferences for government employees:

“Face-to-face interaction cannot be replaced with anything else. Regarding the government, I think they believe they are being financially accountable by cutting back on employees attending meetings. But in reality they are being penny wise and pound foolish. Washington is far too insular. Government employees must get out and explore ideas with others if they are to be successful.”


Photo by Ramsey Mohsen

Photo by Ramsey Mohsen

5. “Behind the Scenes in Boston,” June

As the world’s attention was riveted on the dangerous search for the suspects who planted two bombs at the finish line at the Boston Marathon last April, the city’s meetings and hospitality industry communities were taking on the complex and demanding task of ensuring the safety and well being of  thousands of meeting attendees who were in town or on their way.

6.  CMP Series: “It’s Complicated,” July

gluten-thumbWe asked convention-center chefs and culinary staff for their advice for successfully (and safely) navigating the rapidly expanding and oftentimes exhausting landscape of dietary requests.


7. CMP Series: “As Good as It Gives,” August

How can meeting planners ensure that their groups’ giving-back efforts make the biggest impact possible? Editor in Chief Michelle Russell talked with experts from inside and outside the industry and came away with fresh ideas about both strategy and tactics.

8. CMP Series: “Show of Respect,” September

In a global economy, it’s critical that meeting professionals be attuned to cultural differences and sensitivities. Our guide covers the basics.

9. CMP Series: “Higher e-Learning,”  December

With the rise of online courses and degrees, technology is transforming education. We look at how meeting planners can make the most of online tools and platforms, while preserving and expanding the value of their face-to-face events.

10. “Zero Tolerance,” December

You may not think your conference needs a sexual harassment policy. These experts think you are wrong, and outline how to incorporate one into your risk management strategy.

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