Exclusive: Inside a SITE Crystal Award-Winning Event

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scenes from streamlinevents SITE Crystal Award-winning President's Club eventPrevue asked the team from streamlinevents to provide an inside look of their SITE Crystal Award-winning 2023 President’s Club incentive trip.

Creating a SITE Crystal award-winning incentive trip is arguably harder than qualifying for the trip itself. To find out how it’s done, Prevue asked the team at streamlinevents for an inside look at the May 2023 President’s Club incentive in St. Kitts and Nevis that landed the 2023-2024 SITE Crystal Award for Excellence in Incentive Travel: Latin America and the Caribbean.

Prevue: How was this event different from a conventional incentive trip?

Streamlinevents team: The overarching purpose of the 2023 President’s Club was much the same as previous President’s Clubs. For the sales team to feel rewarded for their contributions, have exposure to the leadership team during the trip, and walk away feeling incentivized to perform even better the next earning period. While the goal was the same, the methods were very different. Our clients recognized the changing demographics and expectations of the sales team and fully embraced the opportunity to reimagine the traditional incentive trip, giving guests what they often ask for — more leisure time and more choice.

We moved away from the conventional agenda of an incentive program and implemented a few different tactics. This started with making functions optional and included plenty of downtime. This made things more casual and gave guests breathing room to really relax on their hard-earned trip. There were also no business meetings or awards program. These changes in the overall program structure were a big hit with attendees. Attendees enjoyed the addition of more leisure time in the program, with one saying “It was nice to have some downtime to enjoy the resort and not necessarily be in President’s Club-related events all day” in the post program survey. Another attendee touched on the optional small group dine around experience: “Spending dinner with a small group of international coworkers Wednesday night was super unique.”

Prevue: Tell us a bit about the custom travel magazine you developed for qualifiers?

Jamie Johansson, Senior Event Manager: It’s important to get programming to our attendees in advance so they can plan and feel at ease with their upcoming travel. We thought, let’s create it like a travel magazine with all the event information from packing tips to departure details. We wanted it to be a personalized magazine that would get them excited about the trip and something they might keep as a memento of that year’s achievement.

Prevue: How important was personalization and customization to the success of the event?

Erin McCommon, Director, Event Operations: Our deep understanding of both our client and qualifier team enabled us to design an agenda that aligned with their ideal reward trip. The new generation of qualifiers favor more “choice of” when it comes to gifting and activities, along with an overall leisure-oriented experience. 

Prevue: How did you bring more choice into the programming?

Streamlinevents team: We wanted guests to get what they wanted out of club, which is why they were given so much choice in what they participated in throughout the week. In sticking with the freedom to choose, the two large gifting experiences were all about guests selecting what they wanted to receive as a gift. During the sunglasses shopping experience on the beach, they selected options from a variety of high-end sunglasses. And at the conclusion of the week, they were invited to choose from a selection of gifts that would then be mailed to their home.

Attendees appreciated the choice in gifts throughout the program with the sunglasses gifting experience being the favorite gift of President’s Club. Having the choice of gifts made attendees feel rewarded, as this guest commented, “I loved the small surprises — like the sunglasses and the gift-shopping experience. This made it feel really special and like a reward.”

Prevue: What were some key learnings you plan to take forward to future incentives you manage?

Streamlinevents team: The two key areas we plan to continue in future incentive programs are flexibility and choices in programming and building in ample leisure time. Both of these areas were key to the success of the 2023 program and a huge hit with attendees.

Prevue: How did the team react when your clients said they wanted to depart from the usual format?

Anne Gorman, VP, Sales & Marketing:  When our clients mentioned they wanted to shake things up, we were completely on board. We loved the opportunity to do things differently for this program and give attendees what they want — more flexibility, more downtime, and great ways to connect with their peers and executives. While giving attendees the freedom to choose their involvement in group activities, we also wanted to curate amazing experiences that they wouldn’t want to miss. Ultimately, this new format led to an overwhelmingly positive response. We’re already looking forward to next year’s Club!

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