Just before Thanksgiving I was fortunate enough to be part of the first ever CGMP Congress, hosted by the Society of Government Meeting Professionals in Washington, DC. There have been thirty annual meetings but this was the first ever second annual meeting that the association has experimented with. It was open to all holders of the Certified Government Meeting Professional designation and was to be initially capped at 100 attendees. I very conspicuously do not possess the CGMP designation, and part of me thinks I really ought to as a Gilmer Trustee, and this distinction would normally disqualify me from being at the Congress. However, as a stroke of good fortune, I was asked to be a speaker at the Congress. The goal of the meeting was to bring a slightly more elevated level of education to attendees than can normally be brought at the annual meeting which caters to newer attendees. My topic? How to Start Your Own Business. That’s something I know a little bit about.
From the feedback I’ve been able to glean, the Congress as a whole did very well in its first year. I was honored and pleased to put together my breakout on starting my own business. When I was first approached, admittedly, I was hesitant. Was a I really prepared to stand on stage and turn my audience into 50 new competitors? Whether I talked folks into it or talked folks out of it, whether or not the business would even be in our industry, I contend there can only be good coming out of me having an hour of stage time. As a small business owner, it’s priceless for me to be able to garner some exposure and I believe that’s exactly what I did. In the end, one doesn’t start their own business because they simply want to start their own business. Some other compelling reason needs to be the motivator.
So I thank SGMP for the opportunity to be at the first ever CGMP Congress and I look forward to other opportunities to contribute in the near future.