Government Connections - Winter 2013 - (Page 34)

MEMBERSHIP NEWS The Value in Networking By Amy DeSalme Columbia Convention & Visitors Bureau THINK BACK ON your week. How many emails have you sent? How many phone calls have you made? How many times have you checked your Facebook newsfeed? Odds are that it may be a high number. Now try to think of how many inperson connections you have made. How many face-to-face appointments have you kept? If you are like me, this number is much easier to count. Our world, and our workplace, has shifted. We are in an age where the faster communication is, the better it is perceived to be. I admit, I am a big fan of technology and I am excited by all things new and different. I thought that in-person meetings were becoming a thing of the past. Before I became an SGMP member, that is. One of the major benefits to all members of SGMP is the opportunity to attend monthly state chapter meetings, as well as the National Education Conference & Expo. These events are fantastic resources for education-- for both meeting professionals and travel industry members. However, perhaps equally valuable, are the opportunities for networking. For those not in the know, receptions and luncheons on an agenda might seem like trivial social hours. In SGMP this is simply not the case. These occasions are true member benefits. Something I have really learned to appreciate is the value of a personal relationship. As much as I email and text, I sometimes forget that it can be difficult to convey the emotion behind my words. In fact, much of our communication is done nonverbally through how we carry ourselves, make eye contact, our body language, and our facial expressions. How often have you had a misunderstanding about the meaning behind an email, simply because there were no verbal cues or facial expression to go along with the written words? When we meet someone, we learn a lot more about them than we ever could through written conversation only. By observing and listening, it is possible to learn what kind of person they are, and if there is a potential for a business relationship to grow. SGMP offers the opportunity to connect with industry peers, both online and in “the real world.” In addition to the improved communication that occurs face-to-face, we make a much more memorable impression on others after we have met them than if we simply introduce ourselves via email. SGMP meetings open the door for meaningful, personal interaction. It is no secret that people do business with people that they know, like, and trust. I have been able to develop wonderful relationships through SGMP. The social aspect of our organization has allowed me to nurture business relationships and even create new friendships. It is so refreshing to work with my SGMP colleagues on an upcoming meeting. We know one another, so we can speak plainly and honestly about all aspects. Communication between a supplier and a meeting professional, which is vital to the success of any event, comes naturally. The true value of SGMP is in its members. Get out and meet them! 34 GOVERNMENT CONNECTIONS | Winter 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Government Connections - Winter 2013

President’s Letter
Editor’s Letter
Going Places
Dieting on a Per Diem
Plan Green
Education Edge
Ethics and Site Visits
Why the Government Should Hire Qualified, Professional Meeting Planners
Supplier Strategy
Good to Know
That’s Technology
Conference Connection
Travel Tips & Trends
Membership News
SGMP Nation
The Meeting Minute
Advertisers’ Index

Government Connections - Winter 2013