Q&A: Elevating the Human Component of Meetings & Events

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Insurance meeting reception on the former aircraft carrier, the USS Intrepid.

Technology can actually bring people closer together, if we let it.

We interviewed Cosimo Bruzzese, CIS and VP of business development for Briggs, Inc., a DMC Network, to see how they are using technology and immersive local experiences to enhance the human component of meetings and events. Here’s what he had to say.

How is technology facilitating creativity at meetings and incentives?

Using new methods to create VIP experiences is how companies are differentiating themselves and making the experience unique. Arriving at the airport and instantly having a welcome message with the greeter’s picture and mobile number is an example of something that’s becoming the new norm. Receiving electronic credentials at an event is the new expectation in certain industries. Infusing interactive technology into the live learning environment is fundamentally changing the ability of facilitators to engage participants and increase creativity through polling, surveys and Q&A, while improving efficiency in learning. A recent study found that mobile technologies have increased participant engagement, enabled collaborative learning and creativity, increased productivity, creativity and efficiency and reduced back end effort during the learning and educational process.

Are there any cultural elements that attendees readily ask for?

In a city like New York, that is a loaded question. There has been a shift to include incentive experiences in what were previously straightforward meetings. We are managing more events in theatres, museums, the United Nations, and the New York Stock Exchange, than ever before. We are designing meetings that weave a theme through the entire program. For example, we planned a meeting in a theatre that allowed guests to learn about the culture of the theatre district. The guests were able to meet Broadway performers and participated in a team building exercise where they learned a Broadway number with producers and performed at the gala event. This creates a once-in-a-lifetime experience that can tie back into the theme of the meeting.

Is there a greater sense of responsibility these days in terms of the ultimate destination message you want attendees to embrace and give back to the world following a MICE event?

At the very beginning of each MICE event, programs have the potential to be made extraordinary with conscious branding and messaging. Attendees may experience messaging differently so it’s key that it touches on many sensory levels. In addition, people retain information best when they participate in an experience; the key is to make the experience unique and unexpected to each and every participant. What is your New York? Fashion, culture, sports, food, entertainment? Regardless of a particular interest, the message can be carried through.

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