Cadence Meetings + Incentive Travel recap of Cadence Council 2017

Click above to view a sneak peak of Cadence Council 2017!

 

When we look back on our 2017, we’re pretty sure that Cadence Council, our signature customer event that recently took place at the Hyatt Regency Indian Wells, will be the defining moment of the year.

We believe that meaningful connections drive business results, and Cadence Council 2017 was the absolute manifestation of that mission statement. Aside from the camaraderie and hospitality we all felt, it is the theme of "connection" that continues to resonate and reverberate through the halls of Cadence, and hopefully among those who attended as well.

We made a bit of Cadence history this year, as this was the first time we gathered clients from all three of our travel divisions: the travel advisors of Cadence Host Agency, the business travel managers of Cadence Managed Business Travel, and the corporate meeting planners of Cadence Meetings + Incentive Travel.  We call this holistic network of travel services the Cadence Ecosystem, and because the sum of all of our parts is such an integral part of who we are, it was an unforgettable moment for us to have our entire ecosystem on full display and see our customers and strategic partners intermingled and learning from each other.

There were so many "a-ha" moments during the Cadence Meetings + Incentive Travel sessions that this recap could easily be a novel, so for the sake of time, here are the three most important take-aways from our time together:

Defining the Why

Simon Sinek taught us the valuable lesson of starting with why, and we put that lesson to the test from the outset.  First we defined our individual or company specific whys, and then took on the challenge of identifying the reasons you partner with Cadence, what you defined as our “Why.”  Dare we say, there was a ton of synergy!   Looking back at the key words we uncovered together, things like Service, Quality, Solutions, Focus, Inspiration, Passion and Education, we can’t help but feel that we’re in this together.   We walked away with the understanding that people want to work with those who share in the same beliefs, who value the same things in a partnership.  With so much choice out there, that’s a really powerful message and really stresses the importance of defining your why. 

The Power of Connection

We were thrilled and honored to have the pleasure of hosting Jane Burnell-Fraser, VP of Sales, The Americas for Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts as our guest speaker day one.  Jane touched on so many important and resonant subjects but none more impactful that the power of human connection.  Four Seasons is at its core, guided by their unwavering belief in the golden rule, but their legendary service truly lives in the momentary interactions between guest and staff.   They believe that, “life is richer when we truly connect with the people and the world around us.”   Four Seasons delivers on their brand promise by fostering connections, celebrating character and cultivating craftsmanship.  In the same way, all of us present during this session came away reinvigorated by the importance of connecting with each other to contribute to our collective program experience.   Not content to rest of concepts alone, we finished the day with small group conversations designed with this goal in mind:  How can open and honest conversation and connection allow us to do better business together?

The New Partnerships

One of the most powerful concepts we explored at Cadence Council was the idea of partnerships. We wanted to connect the dots between various disciplines in order to deepen relationships and break down walls between partners. We heard from five influential industry minds and learned about what makes a great partnership.  From Gary Musick, president of Gary Musick Productions, we learned that a great production partner is looking for customers with whom they can share “a commitment to event excellence and have an awe and deep appreciation for the emotional experience and tangible ROI.”  Marty MacKay, President, Hosts Global Alliance explained that in order to be best in class worldwide in the DMC space, you need to have an unwavering commitment to Partnership, Quality and Trust.  From Lauren Moss, Sr. Account Manager, Partnerships with Cvent, we learned that even the best technology is still rooted in people and relationships.  Innovation is critical, but Cvent’s focus is designing their technology to “amplify the power of human connection.”  From Kathie Giles, Director of Global Sales at Two Roads Hospitality, we understood that hotels of the future won’t just be in a location, but of a location.  Two Roads believes that no two trips should be exactly alike and should embrace the power of connection to place, people and ultimately, experience.  Lastly, Tom Romine, Founder and President of Cultivate Corporate Gifts, spoke about how a gifting program can not only elevate an event experience but also create brand advocacy and build meaningful and lasting memories for years to come. 

To sum it all up, we’re blown away by the response from our clients, our strategic partners and everyone who lives and breathes in our Cadence ecosystem.  We truly believe in the meaningful, unstoppable, brilliant potential of genuine human connection.

What was your take away?  Please feel free to share your experience in the comments below!