Meetings Industry Association’s new sales training hits the right note

By Lesley Whyte

The Meetings Industry Association’s (mia) new high-intensity, high-impact Connect Sales HIIT has received high praise.

Designed specifically for the sector, the fast-paced full day event provided the 85 business development managers, sales managers and directors representing a wide range of venues, hotels and directories, with selling strategies they could take back and implement in their own workplaces.

Jessica Peacock, Business Development Manager of One Wimpole Street, said: “This was one of the best training days I have attended. Fantastic speakers and the atmosphere was really exhilarating and idea-provoking. Hire Space’s Ed Poland’s and Sales Doctor’s Tony Morris’ thoughts on proactive calling were great and were lessons I will take away with me and try and implement.”

Graham Bintcliffe, Head of Venue Sales of venuedirectory.com, agreed. He said: “I really wanted to validate that my sales practices are in line with what the experts would suggest – happily I received the validation I needed. I also learned some new ideas and was introduced to some new technologies to further develop my sales arsenal.”

Facilitated by Kevin Jackson, Creative Director at The Experience is the Marketing, each expert-led session provided the perfect opportunity for sales teams to receive expert training in areas such as selling through social media, influencer marketing and brand building.

Jessica Davies-Murphy, Sales Manager of The Grand Brighton Hotel, said: “It was refreshing to hear every type of sales speaker with their views on what to do and compare them with each other.”

The event at Chelsea Football Club also provided ample opportunity for delegates to share their own experiences and advice. Anna Poole, National Sales Manager of EEF Venues, said: “I loved the informal discussions raised, which was easy to do in our theatre-style halfmoon shape as we had space to move chairs around.”

Last week’s Connect Sales HIIT was one of the first sessions that has been developed by the mia’s advisory taskforce – a group of hand-picked, energetic, volunteer influencers from the meetings industry who are working to ensure the busy events schedule continues to stay fresh and address the issues of the day.

The mia’s chief executive, Jane Longhurst, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the feedback from the event. Delegates particularly liked the way the content was delivered via short and sharp presentations and how the interactive format kept energy levels high and interest throughout. The mia’s advisory taskforce is now looking at developing the day further and we will be announcing new dates for the future.”