What was I thinking when I started out on this green meeting journey? There wouldn't be any resistance by venues, hotels and suppliers? The key stakeholders of organizations would immediately embrace sustainability as "the right thing to do?" We wouldn't have to prove the economic savings before anyone would listen? That it would be easy being green? Well...
We found all sorts of obstacles to more sustainable meetings. My Pollyanna, tree-hugging beliefs were soon squelched with the reality of trying to change an industry. I am not alone in my struggles to implement green meeting practices, yet there is rarely an opportunity to talk to fellow meeting professionals commiserate about some of the hilarious antics inherent in "going green."
GMIC leaders were gracious, not to mention very trusting, when they approved my GMIC Sustainable Meetings Conference session to talk about some of the bloopers, scrapes and bumps experienced while greening events. Katherine Manfredi agreed to be my partner-in-crime and share her stories as co-presenter.
We are both confident the story will have a happy ending as each day it gets a little easier. Suppliers have made great progress in providing environmentally friendly services, standardized systems are in place, and the groundwork has been laid to make the job less overwhelming. We will talk about those too so you don't have to learn the hard way.
Consider this is an open invitation to join us for an irreverent romp through life as a sustainable meeting professional! Bring a tale or two of your own.