Advocacy: What & Why?

Obtained during an interview with PCMA Capital Chapter President, Annette Suriani, CMP

The myth:  The general public and unfortunately our elected officials don’t know what the hospitality and meetings industry really is. There’s a perception that we’re party planners.  That we continuously go to these glamorous locations and dine at the fanciest restaurants and don’t fulfill a meaningful purpose.

The reality:  We provide opportunities for individuals for all types in all industries to meet face to face, generate new ideas and share information.  Professionals are exchanging best practices, learning how to solve problems and becoming informed about the newest and greatest methods, ideas and concepts that fit their needs.

The general public does not understand that we provide the platform for learning, not for happy hours and parties.  True professionals attend the meetings we construct to learn and to better themselves, which impacts what they do and ultimately betters our world.

“People need to understand the impact we have on the economy and on business decisions.”

The hospitality industry is one of the largest in the US employing 14.9 million people with an economic impact of $14 trillion domestically and internationally.  When you tell people not to go to Las Vegas or other destinations it hurts the local economy.  People don’t realize how many lives it affects and the ripple effect it creates.  When a large percentage of the population is employed by one industry and their demand decreases, their income also decreases and that simultaneously decreases taxes being paid to local economies, reduces disposable income, which in turn affects the surrounding businesses.

Don’t overlook the business growth and its impact on society either.  Doctors prevented you from getting that disease, teachers were successful at providing you with an education and engineers were able to make the car you drive everyday safe because they had the opportunity to meet with other likeminded people in order to exchange and collaborate on ideas.

To ensure the growth of our economy and business practices, it’s vital that you educate the public and our elected officials about the importance of providing face to face opportunities in all industries and professions.  Don’t let the mistakes of a few affect our economy or the opportunity to advance medicine or world peace.

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