International meetings can be exciting. But they also can be expensive, intimidating and downright risky. Before you choose to meet in a faraway place, therefore, you'll need to justify your desire. Fortunately, there's no shortage of reasons that can help you make the case both to yourself and to your boss.
"Information and content distributed at a meeting held in a remote location can just as easily be disseminated in a venue around the corner from a company's corporate headquarters. But there are several reasons that can help make the case to upper management for moving a meeting halfway around the world," says Successful Meetings Senior Editor Andrea Doyle.
The first and most obvious justification for long-haul meetings is that they can brand your organization as a global competitor.
"It's easy to say an organization is global, but demonstrating that means getting beyond your own borders and interacting with the rest of the world on its own terms," explains Doyle, who says "the cross-cultural exchange is one of the most important aspects of international meetings."
Another benefit of long-haul meetings: They allow you to tap into local centers of excellence.
"What attracts many groups to international destinations [is that they have] unique areas of expertise that can be tapped into, be they in the fields of medicine and bio sciences, automotive and logistics, energy and environment, or others," Doyle says. "Global brainpower adds to the success of a conference."
Finally, there's goodwill. "While goodwill is not a goal that can by itself support the weight of a decision to choose a long-haul destination, it can provide significant value to both attendees and the host organization," Doyle concludes. "Faraway locales offer out-of-the-ordinary group experiences that help attendees develop camaraderie and create memories that are priceless. Which, in turn, results in attendees looking upon the company they work for favorably."
Questions, Comments, Suggestions?
Contact Successful Meetings Editor in Chief Vincent Alonzo with your "How To" ideas.