ESPA Annual Conference Attendance Up by 10 Percent

December 12, 2014

The Event Service Professionals Association (ESPA) announced December 10 that attendance for its 2015 Annual Conference is tracking 10 percent ahead of last year at this time.

The increase aligns with the results from the association’s recent survey which found that 81 percent of meeting planners feel continuing education by event service professionals is extremely important to keep up with industry trends, compliance and best practices when it comes to servicing their meetings.

“It’s rewarding to see the meetings industry put a stronger emphasis on event services and the importance of continuing education,” said ESPA President Julie Pingston, CMP, CTA. “Each year, we provide attendees with dynamic speakers, comprehensive educational sessions that discuss the latest industry trends and valuable tools to improve their professional development.”

The conference program, to be held January 9–11, 2015, at the Sheraton Chicago Towers & Hotel, will provide educational content that caters to the unique and challenging role that event service managers play at their respective venues every day.

Kicking-off the conference, Johnny Campbell will reveal how attendees can cope and overcome the leadership challenges of the 21st century in his presentation, “The 21st Century Leader: How to Lead, Manage and Influence Others When You’re Not in Charge.” Attendees also will earn effective and sound strategies for leading others in a changing world. Nancy Friedman, The Telephone Doctor, will close the conference with her presentation, “Are you Really Engaged? Golden Nuggets of Client Service.” During this interactive session, event service professionals will learn important tips and techniques on how to deliver superior customer service to their meeting planner clients.

Conference sessions offer attendees up to 8.75 hours of continuing education credits, and include “Overcoming Room Block Poaching & Pirating,” “Risk Management – New Challenges for Venues and Destinations,” “Q&A with the Planners,” “Five Apps on-the-Go: Keep on Top of Things Even When You’re Out-of-Office” and “Event Safety Guide – A New Resource.” Attendees will experience valuable networking and additional educational opportunities at a welcome reception, collaborative breakout and interactive sessions, optional offsite excursions, networking breaks, multiple general sessions and Café Chicago, a new interactive lunch.

ESPA’s Business Meeting and Awards Presentation will be held January 10 at which time the Convention Services Manager (CSM) of the Year award winners will be announced.

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