The value of an industry network

The value of an industry network

Have you ever thought of the value of being part of an industry network? How informal learning opportunities and knowledge sharing can enhance your career? If not, then read on.

I was recently elected to the board of the Danish chapter of Meeting Professionals International (MPI) – an international network of meeting planners and suppliers to the meetings industry who work to expand knowledge sharing and education in the industry – and as of July 1, 2017 I am the Vice President of Education for the 2017-2018 term.

I have been a member of MPI since 2003 (back in 2006-2007 I was also a member of the board) and throughout all these years, I have gained invaluable connections, networking opportunities, and lifelong friends.

As a member of MPI you can attend numerous educational events both on and offline.

In Denmark, we have a chapter meeting each month where we meet and exchange knowledge about subjects as diverse as social media for the meetings industry, experience economy, intercultural communication, and mindfulness. We also meet for more informal gatherings for a drink or a spur of the moment dinner. Though we are a business network, there is room for both the formal educational events and the spontaneous happy hour.

MPI International also have international events for all members around the World – sort of like annual general meetings where the members can attend educational sessions – as well as a vast online catalogue of webinars, papers, etc.

Educational opportunities for the meetings industry in Denmark are limited – especially if you are not in your 20’s and entering your educational path – and having an industry network to share experiences and knowledge with is crucial to your development within the industry.

As an example, it is always easier to negotiate with a person you know, and having access to great suppliers makes life easier to us meeting planners. Or how about the fact that your international network has 17,000 members on which education, papers, and information is based – that must count for something when you are trying to get that seat at the table with the C-suite.

In my next blogpost, I will share my thoughts on educational opportunities in the meetings industry in Denmark.

See you next week.