Northstar Meetings Group's the inaugural Small & Boutique Meetings at the Westin Poinsett in Greenville, S.C., on July 17-19, will feature educational sessions on work-life balance and relationship-building.
The hosted-buyer event will connect hotels, destinations and other suppliers with meeting planners who are looking to elevate their boutique-sized meetings. Though planners are looking to book small meetings, the event is open to properties of all sizes. Small & Boutique Meetings also will offer one-on-one appointments and free time to explore Greenville.
Stinson Ferguson, a litigation attorney, will speak about work-life balance and setting boundaries.
"[Work-life balance] is an awareness of what's going on around you and what's coming up," Ferguson said. "I've spent a significant part of my career in a large corporate law firm, where you're supposed to be on call all the time. But even now that I'm out of it, there are some days I recognize I need to be online for a little bit on a Saturday or Sunday. But it's less about other people and more about me. I'm doing it to make my next day lighter."
Setting boundaries is is part of the process.
"It goes for work, family and friends. It's beyond just the professional," said Ferguson. "Oftentimes, even when the conversations are light and you're talking about good stuff, a barrage of communication can be very overwhelming."
Crystal Pace, vice president of sales and public relations for Pinnacle Hospitality, will lead the other education session, talking about relationship-building and how to increase your influence.
"You don't want to just hop from networking event to networking event to get to know people, especially if you're trying to break into a region or a business, because you want to be intentional with your time," Pace said. Instead of everyone viewing each other as a sales target, networking should be about "figuring out who you are, what's important to you, and making connections based on that," she added.