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2021 SISO Summer Conference Program

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  • Human Resources
  • Marketing
  • Small Business
  • Stream 1
  • Stream 2
  • Stream 3
  • Women's Leadership
Monday, August 23, 2021
  1. SISO Women's Leadership Forum - Welcome and Introductions
    Salon 7 & 8
  2. Setting the Stage as we Navigate the New Normal
    Salon 7 & 8
    The pandemic has given many of us the opportunity to rethink our career goals, for some, it has been a time of career transition and we are preparing to navigate the new normal.  How do you show up for yourself and those around you to empower ourselves and others, how do we negotiate for what we want to happen?
  3. SISO Women's Leadership Forum - Networking Break
    Foyer - Salon 7 & 8

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  4. Keynote: How you can you show up for yourself and your company and what that really means
    Salon 7 & 8
    We are constantly asked to show up, but what does that actually mean? How do you show up for a company? For yourself? For others? Join Megan to learn how embracing empathy and leaning into authentic leadership can deliver powerful results in this new and constantly changing environment. 
  5. SISO Women's Leadership Forum - Wrap-Up for the Day
    Salon 7 & 8
  6. SISO Women's Leadership Forum Reception / Buffet Dinner
    Bluegrass Brewing Company (BBC)

    Join us after a packed afternoon of learning, and unwind while networking for Bourbon & Brews. We will meet in the lobby at 6:15 pm at the main entrance doors of the Marriott for a short (1-block) walk to the Reception/Dinner.  Look for the 'Human SISO' signs to guide you.

    Bluegrass Brewing Company

    Bluegrass Brewing Company (BBC), is Louisville’s original craft brewery offering award-winning specialty brews that are “always on tap”….and they also offer great food, atmosphere and a Bourbon Barrel Stout, aged in a Four Roses Bourbon barrel. Dinner will be served with an accompanying beer/bourbon cocktail presented by Andrea Meriweather, a historical curator of bourbon & food and all things Louisville!

    hosted by:

     Louisville Tourism

Tuesday, August 24, 2021
  1. SISO Women's Leadership Forum Continental Breakfast
    Foyer - Salon 7 & 8

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  2. Welcome - SISO Women's Leadership Forum
    Salon 7 & 8
  3. The Art of (Self) Negotiation - part 1
    Salon 7 & 8

    Most women in the trade show industry can negotiate on a hotel or venue contract in their sleep, however negotiating for a promotion, or raise, and articulating self-worth is often hard.  They are not alone.  In fact, over 60% of women say they have never negotiated their salary.  In this interactive WIN Workshop by WIN SUMMIT, you will discover new currencies and negotiation strategies, and gain practical tools to increase self-confidence, and uncover your personal and professional value in any negotiation.

  4. Networking Break - SISO Women's Leadership Forum
    Foyer - Salon 7 & 8

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  5. The Art of (Self) Negotiation - part 2
    Salon 7 & 8
    Most women in the trade show industry can negotiate on a hotel or venue contract in their sleep, however negotiating for a promotion, or raise, and articulating self-worth is often hard.  They are not alone.  In fact, over 60% of women say they have never negotiated their salary.  In this interactive WIN Workshop by WIN SUMMIT, you will discover new currencies and negotiation strategies, and gain practical tools to increase self-confidence, and uncover your personal and professional value in any negotiation.
  6. Networking Lunch - SISO Women's Leadership Forum and Small Business Roundtable
    Salon 9 & 10

    Exclusive buffet lunch for those registered to attend the SISO Women's Leadership Forum and SISO Small Business Roundtable.

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  7. A Mindset For Successfully Navigating Change And Uncertainty

    In the past 18 months we have all faced an unanticipated shock and disruption in our business and personal lives.  No one chose it.  No one was exempt. The abruptness, the magnitude and the global reach of the change exponentially magnified its stress impacts.  In this session, we will explore the mindset necessary to successfully lead ourselves and our teams through change, disruption and a lengthy period of uncertainty while maintaining focus and productivity as well as healthy, collaborative relationships.  Managing our fear, strengthening our trust relationships and realizing team enrichment from our complementarities will position us to thrive as we envision future state and charter a new course. 

  8. SISO Small Business Roundtable - Part 1
    Filly - Thoroughbred

    - As we work and live our way past the one-year mark of this Pandemic, our lives and our businesses have somewhat been put on hold. Our endurance has depended on our resilience, flexibility, and ingenuity. How did we do it?? Let’s share the successes and failures so we can learn from each other.
     
    - Now that 2021 is here, and the vaccine is being distributed, we are still hampered with travel restrictions and the possibility of additional outbreaks. With that uncertainty in mind, what’s the path forward? What new models and approaches to your businesses are you including to keep your communities yoked and how are you generating revenue.

  9. Bring Your Seat to the Table or Build Your Own
    Salon 7 & 8

    What it means to show up as a female leader and why it is important not to forget you have the option to create your own business/table! Tarsus Group's Rachel Wimberly will talk with Jennifer Hoff, president of Taffy Event Strategies and the newly formed Trifecta Events, and Jasmine Smith, Founder and CEO of SmithCo, about how these two dynamic women boldly stepped forward and created their own companies.

  10. Networking Break
    Foyer - Salon 7 & 8

    Exclusive for those attending the SISO Women's Leadership Forum and SISO Small Business Roundtable.

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  11. Understanding and Embracing Generational Differences
    Salon 7 & 8
    A conversation focused on how different generations function in business and the workplace and how those differences can be used to empower and support each other as women in business. What are the generational differences of women in business today? How does this impact interactions with co-workers, suppliers and customers? How do we break the stereotypes, find common ground and manage expectations? This panel will explore strategies to enhance communications and build a better company culture as the industry ramps back up.
  12. SISO Small Business Roundtable - Part 2
    Filly - Thoroughbred
    - When we are able to produce live events again, what will they look like? What precautions will be implemented? Who bears the cost? Will our communities attend? How will our events look different? Will our bottom lines look different? Are you incorporating strategies that you used during the pandemic for a hybrid approach to your events?
  13. Wrap Up and Closing Comments
  14. SISO Summer Conference - Opening Night Reception and Dinner
    Falls City Market - Omni Louisville Hotel
    Meet in the main lobby to walk next door to The Omni, one of Louisville’s newest hotels.  Dinner will consist of a variety of local cuisine in the Falls City Market, to also include some great bourbon, bluegrass music and short downtown tours by the Derby City Cruisers! 
Wednesday, August 25, 2021
  1. Breakfast
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  2. Welcome and Introductions
  3. Deeper Dive (Live?): Q&A with Pandemic-Era Producers
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6
    SISO has produced a number of in-depth Case Studies on events that have gone ahead over the last eight months. Hear from show organizers in the trenches on what they have learned and changed since their shows were produced. Read the Case Studies ahead of time at www.SISO.org and then bring your questions!
  4. Networking Break
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  5. Learnings from 21 months of Managing COVID: An Epidemiologist’s Tale
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6

    Over the last 21 months, epidemiologists have been called on to help navigate the most disruptive pandemic we will experience in our lifetimes. During this presentation, Epistemix CEO John Cordier will discuss some key learnings over the last 21 months, the research that has been completed to assist the exhibition, conference, and live event industry through recovery, and what to expect over the next 6 months.

  6. Using Your Influencers’ Clout to Grow Your Audiences
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6
    Many of the industries or professions our events serve are teeming with influencers, but the potential to harness their clout to grow audiences is going unrealized. mdg’s director of social media Connor Stewart offers expert insights on how to cultivate influencer marketing to promote participation at your next event. You’ll leave with ready-to-implement tactics for event speakers, exhibitor KOLs and social media content creators.
  7. Lunch
    Kentucky International Convention Center

    We cannot bring you to Louisville and not have you see the newly renovated Kentucky International Convention Center, located directly across from the Marriott.  Walk across the convenient skywalk for a quick feel of the new space and have some amazing food by Levy’s Restaurants. Use Skywalk from Marriott to KICC. Masks are required.

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    KICC Levy
  8. Marketing Breakout - What the TECH is going on here?
    Salon 7 & 8
    Hybrid events can offer the best of both worlds and expand your audience reach. Learn how organizers are approaching hybrid, what tech they are using and what they are finding works to deliver audience and ROI. 
  9. Operations Breakout - Continual COVID19 Safety Issues; Navigating Constantly Moving Rules and Expectations
    Salon 9 & 10

    Health & Safety remains a priority as the world continues to navigate the landscape of COVID19 and the rise of the Delta Variant. Collaborate with other operations professionals on how to proactively manage the changing protocols from client expectations to city and venue requirements.

    Talking Point Inclusions:
    - Variance/Changing Requirements by State
    - Client Expectations
    - Surge of Delta Variant
     

  10. Business/Management Breakout - Contracting Hotel and Venue Agreements in the Time of COVID
    Salon 3 & 4

    If you thought you have seen it all: 9/11, Katrina, SARS, H1N1, the Great Recession, mass public protests, political unrest; none of these have compared to the devastating and far-reaching effects of the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020-2021. There is no question that we are currently living through turbulent times, with an increasing number of natural disasters, manmade catastrophes, and economic uncertainty. The old saying "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", has never been truer. 

    This round table session will provide up-to-date real-world information and guidance on how you and your organization can become more forward-thinking ("clairvoyant" so to speak), in order to avoid the unappreciated consequences of entering into a liability-laden contract unwittingly. It will focus on providing attendees with a greater understanding of the important legal issues that need to be reviewed, modified, or included in today's hotel and venue contracts, to help substantially reduce your organization's exposure to unnecessary liability and risks. Special focus will be paid to the areas of cancellation, Force Majeure/Acts of God, excused non-performance attrition, and security concerns.

    Learner Outcomes:
    This session will enable participants to:
    - More effectively and efficiently negotiate force majeure related provision in hotel and venue contracts.
    - Develop a greater awareness of your contractual rights and obligations in order to avoid potential liability pitfalls and disputes in advance.
    - Better, understand the importance of cancellation, Force Majeure, attrition provisions, as well as the true meaning of some of those often overlooked "Boiler Plate Clauses".

  11. Marketing Breakout - Finding and engaging influencers to grow your reach
    Salon 7 & 8
    Influencer marketing is not just a buzzword that is it’s an essential tool todays event marketers need to be using to expand their brand and grow their reach.  And the best news, we all have influencers we can tap into within each of the brands we market – join our conversation on how to approach influencer marketing, learn what strategies are working, what tactics work for different audiences, and how digital communities can be a great place to start! 
  12. Operations Breakout - Sustainability; Making a Meaningful, Measurable Impact
    Salon 9 & 10
    Sustainability rises to the top of every conversation from what clients expect, investors prioritize and
    how industries are evolving. Learn how organizers are operationalizing environmental and social
    objectives, measuring impact and scaling efforts.

    Programs, Goals, How to Achieve Impact
    - Stakeholder Desire and/or versus Requirement
    - Measuring Impact
    - Mobilization with Contractors, Venues, Supplier Partners
    - Funding via Sponsorship  
     
    Discussion Leaders
  13. Business/Management Breakout - Managing in A Hybrid Culture
    Salon 3 & 4
    - What concerns you most about Returning to Offices and managing hybrid teams?  What protocols has your company put into place? What concerns have employees raised?
    - What will a “Hybrid” culture entail at your company?  How are you planning to preserve the important parts of your culture that existed pre-pandemic? 
    - What have you changed/updated in practice since Working From Home?
    - Have you changed the way you are providing coaching/training/mentoring for staff?  If so, what have you implemented, and what is working well?
    - What is new in your career development plans for employees?
    - Many sources cite that the pandemic has disproportionately impacted women negatively, either through job loss, reduced hours/lost wages, or voluntarily leaving the workforce to manage family and home issues. How will you ensure that women do not lose more ground through continued remote/hybrid work in your organization?
  14. Afternoon Networking Break
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:
    Marriott Louisville

  15. Marketing Breakout - Recycling onsite is just the start: How social and environmental sustainability can communicate an authentic message to attract exhibitors and attendees
    Salon 7 & 8
    Why millennials, Gen Z, and the investment community are demanding to know what your event is doing surrounding social and environmental sustainability and how your marketing team is communicating an authentic message to attract exhibitors and attendees.  Social and environmental sustainability isn't nice to have for your event anymore, it's essential. From your largest event to your smallest conference l, what you're doing from a sustainability perspective will set you apart and make your group not only relevant but irreplaceable with the upcoming generations of attendees, exhibitors, and employees.
  16. Operations Breakout - Top Considerations for a Successful Hybrid Experience
    Salon 9 & 10
    When hybrid events are done well, they strengthen the in-person events and provide brand exposure to new audiences. Unfortunately, 2020 was a steep learning curve for the events industry, delivering many lackluster events. This session will explore the critical factors involved in executing a successful hybrid event.

    - Start with your audience and what will appeal to your group (hands-on demonstrations, sharing industry research/trends, engaging content, personalized experiences, networking, matchmaking, CEUs)
    - How are you going to resource (twice the work with fewer resources)?
    - What factors should you consider when selecting the appropriate platform to host your event?
    - Strategy for facilitating networking and connections
    - How do we Monetize?
    - Ways to inject fun into a hybrid event 
  17. Business/Management Breakout - Talent Acquisition and Retention in an Employee's Market
    Salon 3 & 4
    - The Great Resignation or Turnover Tsunami is being talked about frequently.  Have you seen an uptick in turnover in 2021? What are some strategies you are using for retention?
    - What have been the hardest jobs to fill?  Any reliable sources for talent that you can share?
    - After COVID, the event industry may be seen as a less secure place to work.  Do you have any strategies for attracting people to our industry?
    - Do you have programs to “up skill” and train your current staff to allow them to take on new/broader responsibilities and to ready them for promotions? Are you looking for more generalists (people who can contribute in a multi-faceted role) or specialists (ones with a more focused area of expertise/skill set)?
    - How are you using more flexible staffing models (e.g. part-time, temp, or project-based help, contractors) to fill the skills gap?
    - 3-5 years from now, how do you envision the workforce in your organization/our industry being different than pre-pandemic?
  18. Marketing Breakout - Creating an organizational structure for the modern marketing teams
    Salon 7 & 8
    Marketing more so than other business functions is being challenged to evolve the role they play in today’s business. We must keep our pulse on changing customer and market needs, understand the role of technology and data, and work towards creating personalized and engaging experiences for our customers.  Come join the discussion about what the modern digital and data driven marketing organizational structure looks like as we have an in-depth discussion around marketing skill-set, structure and hear examples of teams that have evolved to meet these changing needs. 
  19. Operations Breakout - Top five Considerations to Pandemic Proof Your Contracts
    Salon 9 & 10
    Our panel of experts will discuss the most impactful modifications that need to be made to your contracts during this panel. Our terms and conditions did not provide the necessary protections that we need. It is time to take a fresh look at the agreements to determine where we are exposed.
    Talking Points:
    - Cancellation Clauses
    - Downsizing Restrictions
    - Postponement Clauses
    - Peace of Mind Clauses
    - Revenue Retention Strategies 
  20. Revenue Breakout: Developing Highly Profitable New Product Revenue Streams by Leveraging Your Existing Event Assets
    Salon 1 & 2

    Conferences and tradeshows are ideal platforms to extend into year-round communities. It's in no way a replacement for the IRL event, but rather an extension of the event community that is already in place. And it can be incredibly lucrative and high margin! The key is to create communities that bring buyer and seller together through the gravity of member benefits and learning. Help your members see the "what's in it for me" and find ways to work your community into their daily workflow, and you will multiply your profits and crush your retention goals. Your event will grow as a result.

    A community is strongest when it is fortified with multiple formats for members to engage with. Think of these media formats as pillars holding up the community. These formats included: Online training, certification programs, virtual events, industry award programs, SAAS businesses, research, database products, validation services, publishing models, peer learning, online marketplaces, and sponsored/membership businesses -- just to name a few!

    This session will dive into each of these formats and use specific examples to help stimulate ideas on how to launch minimally viable products (MVPs) to expand your event asset into a high-margin, high retention community.

  21. Session 7D - Business/Management Breakout
  22. Transportation to Reception/Dinner
    Marriot Lobby

    Meet in the lobby of the Marriott hotel near the front doors. Transportation is provided by Louisville Tourism and they will have guides present loading buses beginning at 6:30pm. Attire:  Anything goes for Derby Day, but we encourage hats, fascinators and bow ties to truly be a part of the Derby culture!

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

  23. Old Fashioned Derby Party - Reception and Dinner
    Kentucky Derby Museum

    Buses will depart starting at 6:30 pm from the Liberty Street side of the hotel, located down the long hallway by Starbucks, and guides will be helping to direct.  It is a quick ride to the Kentucky Derby Museum, where every day is Derby Day!  Once you arrive, you will be offered a short walking tour of Churchill Downs or you can stay in the museum and enjoy all things Derby!  Dinner will consist of what we call “Derby Delicacies” and also adult beverages as you take in Louisville’s most cherished history!

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Kentucky Derby Museum

Thursday, August 26, 2021
  1. Breakfast
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  2. Innovation Showcase
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6

    Five SISO members share what they did because of the pandemic to innovate, pivot and strive for success. Be inspired to learn and bring back these ideas to elevate the industry. Hear from Clarion, Emerald, JDC Events, Tarsus and 365 Media Events.

    Presenters:

    Clarion Events North America - Liz Irving, Executive Vice President, - Head of Marketing, Technology, and Customer Experience
    Emerald - Klaudia Tirico - 3G.com
    JDC Events - Jennifer D. Collins, CMP, DES  Events
    Tarsus Group Ltd. - Tricia Barglof, Executive Director - OFFPRICE Show
    365 Media Events - RD Whitney, CEO

  3. Networking Break
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  4. Why should you care about M&A?
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6
    If your job doesn’t directly involve M&A responsibilities, why should you care about your company’s M&A activities? Instead of the usual M&A session discussion about who is buying which events and companies, this panel will talk about why all management levels should consider M&A part of their mindset, the value of M&A to the whole company, and what every show group and team will get out of a stronger M&A focus.
  5. Closing General Session: Industry Advocacy Update
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6
    Overview of the initiatives currently being advocated for by SISO and the Exhibitions & Conferences Alliance.
    Members of the SISO and ECA Boards will update on the work currently underway to address the industry’s needs, and answer your questions!
  6. Closing Remarks
    Marriott Ballroom 5 & 6
  7. Lunch
    Marriott Ballroom Foyer 5 & 6

    Buffet / Sit-down networking lunch, with Grab+Go options for those with early flights.

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    co-sponsored by:

    Marriott Louisville

  8. Tour of the Kentucky International Convention Center
    Kentucky International Convention Center

    Meet at the Skywalk entrance at the Marriott.

    hosted by:

    Louisville Tourism

    KICC

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  • “Without a doubt the most valuable three days of the year for networking, learning, and meeting colleagues.”
    Tony Calanca, Executive Vice President, UBM
  • “Two of the best acquisitions Access Intelligence had executed came directly from contacts and discussions held at the SISO CEO Summit. Beyond that important networking for transactions, I learn best practices from the best in the industry. The ROI for membership is immeasurable.”
    Don Pazour, CEO, Access Intelligence
  • “The impact of SISO is so much bigger than its size. It feels more like a global council of important tribes than a traditional trade association.”
    David Adler, CEO & Founder, Bizbash Media
  • “Our industry thrives on the personal relationships that face-to-face builds, and the CEO Summit is the ultimate place to build YOUR network!”
    Tom Mitchell, President, Messe Dusseldorf North America
  • “As busy, independent, for-profit organizer, SISO keeps our company connected to all the key players working in this industry and allows great relationships and ongoing learning of best practices from the best in the business. All invaluable assets to help move our business forward."
    Howard Hauben, CEO, H2 Events
  • “The SISO membership represents the entire for-profit tradeshow community and the annual SISO conferences are must-attend events for their educational and networking value.”
    Joel A. Davis, Founder & CEO, JD Events
  • “SISO connects strategic minds through invaluable networking opportunities and face-to-face executive conferences focused on excellence and inspiration.”
    Dana Teague, Vice President, Informa Global Exhibitions
  • “Participating in SISO puts you on the leading edge of the events world.”
    Charles McCurdy, CEO, Informa Global Exhibitions