MeetingsNet’s annual Changemaker list recognizes 20 outstanding meetings professionals for their efforts to move their organizations and the industry forward in unique and positive ways. Find all the profiles here.
For her dedication to sharing her expertise, including translating a seminal meeting management text and spreading its sophisticated approach to her home country
I strive to bring change to the industry and to how the profession is perceived by people from both inside and outside. This is why I advise both fellow organizers and event participants. I also share my knowledge through regular contributions to industry media and education initiatives with those who might not have resources available but would like to change the way they plan or attend events. One example is my “Meeting Architecture in Russia” project. In 2016, I translated into Russian, and managed publishing of, Maarten Vanneste’s Meeting Architecture: A Manifesto. It has become the first-ever Russian publication on meeting design and has helped many Russian-speaking event professionals learn about the approach.
Also, my website and blog, Matey Events, is the only MICE-specific resource in two languages (Russian and English) aimed at promoting the strategic value of events and quality in event design, as well as at helping develop the Russian MICE sector.
I’d like to focus more on working with event participants. I believe it is particularly crucial that they better understand the value of events and meetings and are able to apply such knowledge to their benefit when participating. I’d also like to work more on applying knowledge from other sciences (e.g., cognitive and behavioral) to event design. The events business is all about people, human interaction, and emotions. The fields of sociology, psychology, and neuroscience can help us bring events to a whole new level.
Be persistent in your efforts even if you don’t see immediate results. Changes can take time.
Best Advice I Ever Got
I’ve got two. First, do what you think is important, and not what is trendy. Second, have a partner who will support what you do.
If I Have a Free Hour
Spend time in nature.
I developed what I call a Matey Events Review, a format for mentoring fellow organizers or prospective attendees to ensure they provide or receive maximum value from business events. For the organizers, I provide an independent expert opinion and recommendations based on the event’s current state of affairs and goals for the future. For the participants, it means working on their goals with regard to the event, training them to get the basics of participation right, and ensuring they have tools required for the most positive and productive attendance.
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