International Global Meeting Day in Clermont County

Mar. 8 2023

IT’S TIME TO FACE THE FACTS: Meetings are essential to Clermont County. They also matter deeply to those who visit us to attend.

IT’S TIME TO FACE THE FACTS: Meetings are essential to Clermont County. They also matter deeply to those who visit us to attend. One of the most powerful tools at the disposal of leaders in government and business—the “it” factor that can move the needle, spark innovation or close a deal—is ensuring that employees, constituents and colleagues are participating in face-to-face meetings and events.

Bringing attention to this critical business function is why Global Meetings Industry Day—celebrated on March 30—is incredibly meaningful. Meetings and events drive local economies and businesses while simultaneously powering other industries, spurring new ideas, forming deeper business connections and fueling individual professional growth.

In 2022, there was nearly $100 billion in meeting and events-related travel spending nationwide, which supported 600,000 American jobs. Here in Clermont County, Ohio, tourism generated $629 million in spending in 2021, according to July 2022 Tourism Economics Study. The spending meetings bring has a ripple effect across our regional economy. When people attend a meeting or conference at Oasis Conference Center, Holiday Inn and Suites Eastgate, RSVP Event Center, Cincinnati Nature Center, or Little Miami Brewery Event Center, for example, they also stay in area hotels, eat in restaurants, utilize local transportation and shop at local businesses.

Beyond the broader economic impact, meetings bring numerous intangible benefits—things you won’t always see on a spreadsheet but are critical to sustained business success. First, the strongest business relationships are forged through face-to-face interactions. While virtual meetings may be convenient, data shows that they are much less effective in developing lasting relationships. According to a study from Forbes Insights, face-to-face requests are 34 times more effective than emailed ones.

The same study found that in-person meetings matter to the C-Suite as well. In fact, 77 percent of executives consider business travel essential and 43 percent of business travelers say reduced business travel is negatively impacting their company’s financial performance. There is a significant competitive advantage to getting workers back on the road.

While established business travelers know these benefits firsthand, there is a younger generation of professionals who have yet to experience the full benefit of business travel. Workers who came of age during the peak of the remote office ascent need these experiences to expand their professional networks, learn new skills and generate growth opportunities for themselves and their employers. Simply put, we’re built for face-to-face communication and the environment that professional meetings provide. The subtle gesture or verbal cue can convey more about one’s interest in a product, proposal or idea than any lengthy email or virtual exchange. Government and business leaders—and Clermont County—stand to gain so much just from the simple act of attending and hosting in-person meetings.

THE EVIDENCE IS CLEAR: Meetings matter to Clermont County. In 2023, let’s get down to business.