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SMMPs Aren’t for the Faint-Hearted

It takes boldness and innovation to dive into a strategic meetings management program.

Developing a strategic meetings management program is not an easy project to suggest to company leadership. Harnessing the uncontrolled meeting and event spend in a corporation can be a challenging endeavor. This article is a round of applause for the proactive innovators who have made the choice to champion an SMMP, as well as the suppliers who embrace and support those newly developing programs.

Below are four ideas that will help others to appreciate your vision.

1. Be confident in your ability to articulate the SMM value drivers:
• Improved visibility and insights into meeting and event spend
• Risk mitigation and increased compliance
• Cost containment and demand management
• Brand integrity and improved outcomes
• Data and business intelligence to drive strategic decisions

2. In anticipation of a future SMM program, develop a bold sourcing strategy that you can implement now:
• Take a long-term view rather than a transactional approach.     
• Develop a preferred-supplier program in multiple categories: hotel, meeting logistics, audiovisual, DMC, and transportation.
• Create multi-year contracts and service-level agreements (SLAs) with tangible measurements.

1. Be confident in discussing SMM with your clients; if they are embarking on an SMMP, express your willingness to support the initiative by following any new processes.

2. If your client is considering an SMM, be generous about sharing some of the best practices you have learned from other clients. 

Help embolden others by raising your hand to suggest an SMM program or support your client’s SMMP

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