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Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) as of last fall changed its regional and national meeting formats for its focus on hospitality education. Previously known as Affordable Meetings, HSMAI is now positioning the programs as MEET.

I attended the keynote speaker and lunch at HSMAI 2012 MEET in Chicago, and was incredibly impressed with the selection of Janine Driver as HSMAI’s keynote speaker (Janine will be the keynote at the other regional and national MEET events).

Janine (that’s what she asks the audience to call her) is a nationally recognized, body language expert who shared her years of insights with the meeting and event professionals who attended. Janine was inspirational and insightful, and she was extremely well-received by the attendees. From my perspective and the planners who shared lunch at my table, Janine was certainly a nice addition to the HSMAI annual program.

The planners also indicated they were impressed with the educational content at HSMAI’s MEET in Chicago.

Of course, every conference has its trade show floor exhibitors, and HSMAI had a mix of regional and national convention and visitors bureaus and some hotels.

Overall, it was a nice show. The emphasis on planning and focus on face-to-face meetings is certainly a format that meeting professionals will always embrace.

Have you attended an HSMAI meeting lately? Feel free to share your thoughts and feedback here!