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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Thanksgiving and how we change, one step at a time

On Thanksgiving, we have time to reflect on what matters, and on how we can all contribute. Last summer, I read a story that made me sit back and reflect. Thinking of what makes "moments" for people, that is what keeps me planning events, and I want to share this with you now. Picture yourself in a perfect moment. You are at the side of a lake, the mist is low, the sun is rising, the light beams down. You think, “I will remember this moment forever.” Your friend stands beside you, terminally ill, and says your thought out loud. He says, “I am remembering it now.” I approach each event with the attitude that my role in the puzzle of an event is to create the environment that enables memorable moments. Whether that is a hug shared with a new friend, or an engagement during a quiet moment of a glacier picnic, or a group of people holding hands, swaying together and singing along with the soloist sharing “Leaving on a Jetplane”, or a gasp as you see the sun set over the spectacular mountainscape that is our backyard… we never know what that moment will be, and never lose sight of our part in bringing memories to life. When a group is brought together, whether it is for a reward and recognition program, a world-class sporting event, a fundraiser, a gala dinner, a meeting meant to inspire collaboration, or any of a hundred other reasons, there is always a deeper objective. The objective is to create an emotional connection where shared values are celebrated and memories are made. What continues to drive us, what gets us through the challenges, is passion; a belief that we are not just here to ensure the logistics of your meeting work, we are here because we believe that together we can create special moments. For me, this is what keeps me up at night, fills my mind during long runs, making them shorter. It is what has kept me at this, around the world and for a huge diversity of groups for many years. Every step we take with you can make a difference to someone. Every day, we are presented with new possibilities, and every day, we know we are lucky that this is what we get to do. With each new opportunity, we get to start with fresh inspiration and excitement, and we look forward to each connection, each moment. I appreciate my moments, and look forward with great anticipation to what might come next.

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