Developing meaningful education programs with broad consumer appeal



Following the success of the PCO Associations webinar program in the past few years, research is now underway to evaluate the ongoing impact on attendees and the drivers behind requests for some of the more innovative topic themes.

This year the Webinar Series will be expanded to include a diverse range of topics, from basic business management to futuristic concepts and innovation.

Warrick Merry has also been appointed to conduct a series of in-depth interviews with Meetings Industry leaders here and overseas, these will be broadcast on the Associations website throughout the year.

Program Director, Peta Moore, will use these activities as a content development platform for the annual conference in Brisbane this December.

PCO Councillor Peter Sugg, who has been meeting with external consultants said “research indicates that the future direction of the Association will revolve around online delivery and communication to an increasingly tech savvy but time poor audience. At a recent briefing by a social demographer the discussion centred on the needs and engagement strategies required to service “virtual members”. Digital disruption in the Meeting Sector is now a reality and the Association will publish a white paper on this emerging phenomenon later in the year.”

“In our member and partner businesses, just about the only constant that can be predicted is change. The relationships and interdependence between venues, transport, delegates, convenors, managers, technologies, bureaus, governments and clients has never been more complex.

Convenors are beginning to understand and question ROI and can clearly articulate the objectives of their conference. While the “returns” may vary from Corporate to Association events, they need to be understood by all groups in the supply chain. The nature of meeting and event design, delivery, marketing and management is in a state of transition.

As the world constantly refocuses and innovates, those who survive in the industry will be highly agile. We need to adopt and embrace constant change. This is now the basic response expected by our constituents who can change channels when something bores them, fast forward through the ads, move away from a website in the blink of an eye if they don’t see what they like. If YouTube takes too long to load they move on and don’t email them an attachment if it’s not compressed because they won’t wait for it to open.”

One of Britain’s biggest graduate recruiters will no longer consider degree or A-level results when assessing potential employees, while Ernst & Young has dropped its requirement for a university degree from its entry criteria for their 2016 graduate program. Therefore developing meaningful education programs that address these complexities, have broad consumer appeal and attractive delivery platforms is the challenge for the Association in this new paradigm.

For information on the 9th Annual PCOA Conference and Exhibition, at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 27 – 29 November 2016 click here