As we wrap up 2020 – a year that has had significant impacts on our industry, country, and the world – our senior leadership team shares the positive things they have learned from this year and the trends they see in the years ahead.
2020’s Biggest Lessons
Brian Meyer: My biggest lesson learned from 2020 is that many things are simply out of your control; the key is to focus on those things in your life that are most important and meaningful to you.
Beth Chitnis: Gratitude and grace. What made the year challenging was not the same for everyone. The analogy of “we’re all in this storm together but we’re not all in the same boat” resonated with me. While it has always been our practice to support our association clients with gratitude and grace, these two approaches were amplified in 2020 for every interaction: taking the extra time to show gratitude for the association members and volunteer leaders and having more grace for those experiencing greater challenges.
Karl Kirsch: Be adaptable and make decisions quickly to capture and capitalize on opportunities. And, keep a mask in the pocket of every coat.
2020’s Emerging Trends
Alex Murphy: Contract flexibility will continue to be required for 2021 and beyond as well as virtual event components, higher standards of cleanliness, and new food and beverage protocols.
Brian Meyer: The accelerated adoption of technology for virtual or hybrid meetings. I also think venues, hotels and airlines will continue to highlight safety as a core part of their brands.
Beth Chitnis: Virtual meetings are here to stay. While organizations will be eager to return to in-person meetings, I anticipate that virtual components will remain. We will continue to innovate in the virtual space and find new ways to battle the virtual fatigue.
Lisa Burton: Virtual components will remain a more consistent part of meetings, even when we get back to more, larger in person events.
2020: Our Bright Memories
Phyllis Abrams: My son celebrated his Bar Mitzvah.
Kowana Ragland: I celebrated 20 years at Meeting Expectations. We executed a successful and safe in-person meeting in August 2020. I was also honored to be named a 2021 Meeting Professional to Watch by ConventionSouth Magazine. Personally, I connected more with my sister during our morning workouts via Facetime.
Jalene Bermudez: Planting wildflower seeds and watching them grow; Bird feeding/watching, identifying all the different birds in my yard; short breaks and walks in the middle of the day on a consistent basis; getting to know my neighbors more.
Lisa Neylon: 2020 allowed the opportunity for me to truly connect with my Meeting Expectations team members more. It also took me to new levels of technology expertise. I took online courses to expand my knowledge not only of technology but of languages as well. Clients and friends took a lot more time away from texting and email to connect via phone and video calls. We really took time to connect this year.
Karl Kirsch: I improved my remote office, and I lost a lot of weight!
James Hobbs: My husband and I learned how to do weekly meal planning and grocery shop together. We also decreased our monthly expenses by $1,000 monthly over the course of the year.
Christine Hilgert: Enjoying more time with my teenage/young adult who is a senior in high school. It’s been great making dinners, watching shows, and walking together to hear her concerns, dreams and aspirations.
Beyond 2020: What We Look Forward To
Micheal North: Personally, I look forward to traveling again. Professionally, reconnecting with co-workers as the pandemic ends and more faces return to the office.
Lisa Neylon: I look forward to connecting live with clients and friends with fewer restrictions…. a time where fearing to be together does not exist.
Beth Chitnis: Hugs and handshakes! I miss being able to connect in person with members at events and to say hello or farewell to friends and colleagues with a hug.
Christine Hilgert: Professionally, I can’t wait to get back to more in-person events. Personally, travel and competing in paddle boarding races.
Just for Fun: Favorite Holiday Movie
Micheal North: Elf…is there anything better?
Lisa Burton: Christmas Vacation
Jalene Bermudez: I can’t pick one…Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, The Holiday, Serendipity, Miracle on 34th Street (1994), and the Polar Express.
Watch and enjoy our wishes for health and happiness this holiday season. From the Meeting Expectations family to yours, Happy Holidays!