As former President/CEO of Meeting Professionals International (MPI), the largest organization of meeting and event industry professionals in the world, with over 20,000 members representing 86 countries, Bruce redesigned live events and online experiences for MPI members as well as introduced a Global Training practice with a portfolio of certifications.
His first foray into the event planning business came about during his college days. He muses, “My first event was a fundraiser involving horses and student wagering (for charity) on the student commons. Great event but I found out that begging forgiveness is not easier than asking permission.”
A solid industry advocate, Bruce believes that “even in the digital age, great event professionals delivering great events can make a powerful difference, well beyond any other marketing or communication initiative.”
He continues, “Event professionals have to get past spending all their time and anxiety dwelling on managing logistical inputs. True…the devil is in the details but technology now offers great solutions that allow event professionals to better focus on managing event outcomes. Shifting the conversation to a focus on results has been discussed for years, but not enough has changed. Technology now lets us manage event operations, make purchasing decisions and measure results better than ever before. Compared to other industries we are not taking enough advantage of technological leverage.”
And it is for this reason that he has been a staunch supporter of Froomz. “Froomz represents the next wave in event industry marketplace development. It quickly and easily creates direct connections between event professionals and venue owners. Froomz allows event professionals access to amazing local venues that they likely never even knew existed while creating opportunities for venue owners to profile their venues to lucrative business opportunities.”
As for future trends in the events industry? “Today’s digital culture is fundamentally changing the way people plan and participate at events. Attendees expect to collaborate more in event design and they want to have multiple ways to engage with attendees and organizers on their own terms. It means event professionals need to be able to deploy and manage engagement platforms that seamlessly integrate into the attendee experience. AND…they have to allow for and measure engagement before, during and after the event itself. The impact is that event professionals have to think about the attendee experience not just in terms of hours or days…but in terms of months or even years.”
Outside of advising Froomz, Bruce is currently the President/CEO of Bandwidth Management, an events industry consultancy providing strategic planning and market consultation for high-performing brands and start-up ventures in the global events industry helping them secure new lucrative business. In addition to serving as President/CEO for MPI six years, Bruce has also held executive leadership roles with the Toronto Convention and Visitors Association; the Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Olympic Bid Society; and Tourism Vancouver.
In between meetings and events, Bruce can be found transporting his daughters to their various sporting events and staying active through cross-fit, a strength training and conditioning program practiced at police academies and by elite athletes, champion martial artists and hard-core fitness enthusiasts. “It helps provide physical and emotional balance to the professional demands of the events industry.”
With his help, we at Froomz hope to lessen the stresses that meeting and event professionals deal with , including their first logistical challenge: finding a venue.