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Only FICP members and hospitality partners have access to TheNetwork, our exclusive online community. TheNetwork is a treasure trove of resources and opportunities to connect with peers. Here are 10 things you might not know you can do on TheNetwork! >>


FICP Chats

The FICP community meets regularly for FICP Chats, a member and partner-only benefit established by FICP Board member Jennifer Squeglia, CMP. FICP meetings professional members and hospitality partners are invited to these virtual conversations about the future of meetings.

Missed a chat? Access recordings of all FICP Chats in TheNetwork, we've sorted them by FICP's Area of Interests below.

Meeting Planning Trends and Solutions

What's the Outlook for 2022 and Beyond?

December 2, 2021

Join Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, as she brings together our Meetings Professionals members and Hospitality Partners to moderate a discussion about the future of meetings.

Do close out the year, we'll look forward to 2022 events and beyond.

Discussion Topics:

  • What is the status of your live events? What does Q1 2022 look like?

  • How has your meeting strategy been impacted by balance of return of in-person, virtual, and hybrid?

  • How are your company’s travel restrictions impacting your work?

  • What is happening with your 2022 budgets? How are you communicating budget changes with your partners?

  • How have COVID protocols impacted your programs?

  • What is the tipping point for your meeting cancellations (i.e. is it based on gonvernment restrictions, case counts, vaccination statuses, etc.)?

Watch the Recording

The Return of In-Person Events: Best Practices for a Successful Event

June 3, 2021

Join Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, as she brings together our Meetings Professionals members and Hospitality Partners to moderate a discussion about the future of meetings.

During this discussion we will be focusing on the return of in-person events and best practices for a successful event.

Discussion Topics:

  • Food & Beverage Planning
  • Agenda Design
  • Meeting Sets
  • Health Security Plans – requirement of vaccinations and/or COVID-19 testing?
  • Air / Ground Transportation best practices
  • Tours and Activities
  • Evening Event Planning – on-site and off-site
  • Keynote Speakers – live or streamed in?

Watch the Recording

The Future of Meetings: Sustainability

The events industry has made decent progress in the last few years with sustainability – with the global pandemic and the concerns about germs and viruses spreading, we will not abandon but refocus our efforts! 

Topics include:

  • Silver linings for Sustainability as a result of the pandemic (i.e. Many “no touch” processes / less print materials)
  • What has changed as a result of the pandemic (i.e. More Single Use Plastics and Transportation)
  • Climate Change / Carbon Footprint – how can we help?
  • Meetings Professionals Best Practices
  • Hospitality Partners Best Practices
  • Food & Beverage Best Practices


Watch the Webinar

Booking Group Business in the Future: The RFPs, Proposals and Negotiations Before Going to Contract

May 28, 2020

During this discussion, we will be focusing on how site research, the RFP process and negotiations will look different moving forward. Topics include:

  • It used to be “everything is negotiable,” but is it in this new environment?  Respectful communication and partnership will be paramount.
  • How will company RFPs need to be adjusted for both hotels and DMCs?
    • Updating of event space needs based on “social distancing” set considerations
    • Inclusions of cleaning and food service protocol requirements
    • Transparent communication of expected contract clauses – who takes on the risk if someone becomes ill?
  • How will hotel and DMC proposals need be adjusted?
    • Due to new cleaning protocols – will check-in time and check-out times change?  Have early check-ins and/or late check-outs gone away?
    • How to communicate your safety protocols?
    • Will concessions need to be adjusted?  What concessions will be easier to provide?  Which ones will be harder to offer?
    • Will there be a limit on types of food & beverage service – do you foresee service charges and/or gratuities increasing?

Watch the Webinar

Strategic Thinking and Impact

The Future of Meetings, 2021

March 4, 2021

During this discussion we focused on what the rest of 2021 will look like.

Discussion Topics:

  • What factors are impacting the decision to host in-person events in 2021?
  • Our hotel partners have done a great job with Covid-19 protocols – what do meetings professionals need to help communicate a safe meeting to their attendees?
  • What are company stakeholders saying? Who has the final say about when a corporation holds meetings again? CEO, CDC, state governments?
  • Each state’s reopening plans are different – how does that impact bringing people together especially for a national conference?
  • How far out are you making decisions whether or not events will take place?
  • When we meet again, it will be important for hotels and meetings professionals to revisit contracts and space to accommodate potential room block decreases and more meeting space needed to accommodate for social distancing.


Watch the Recording

Engagement Strategies for Your Team and Your Attendees

October 22, 2020

Join Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, as she brings together our Meetings Professionals members and Hospitality Partners to moderate a discussion about the future of meetings.
Seven months into the pandemic, how do you beat Zoom fatigue and keep people engaged and motivated? During this discussion we will be focusing on innovative and creative techniques – whether it be for yourself, your team, co-workers and/or meeting attendees.

Topics Include:

  1. Networking Activities
  2. Teambuilding
  3. Games
  4. Musical Entertainment
  5. CSR
  6. Gifting


Watch the Recording

Technology Solutions

Focusing on Virtual/Hybrid Along with Technology

April 15, 2021

During this discussion, we will be focusing on technology, virtual events and their role in our industry over the past year. We’ll also discuss hybrid events and how virtual/hybrid events will be positioned as part of our overall event strategies complementing in-person events moving forward.

Topics include:

  • What are our virtual event best practices?
  • What virtual platforms/technologies are you using and for what type of events?
  • What have you seen from an engagement and networking perspective that is new and different?
  • How do you see virtual events remaining as part of your event strategy moving forward?
  • Is hybrid a consideration to facilitate social distancing and/or to accommodate attendees who are not yet comfortable travelling?
  • Budgeting and Communication Best Practices for virtual, hybrid and in-person
  • How our hospitality partners support:
    • Virtual Site visits / planning visits - share tips on how to do this successfully
    • In-house AV teams offering equipment / robust internet connectivity for hybrid meetings
    • DMCs / production companies and their amazing support of virtual events, inclusive of gifting logistics and ideas
    • Keynote speakers and Entertainment presenting virtually – several have made an amazing pivot and reaching a larger audience!

Watch the Recording

The Future of Meetings: Hybrid Meetings: The Bridge to Bringing Back In Person Meetings

October 1, 2020

Join Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, as she brings together our Meetings Professionals members and Hospitality Partners to moderate a discussion about focusing on how your career trajectory has been impacted by COVID-19.
During this discussion we will be focusing on Hybrid meetings; our success in bringing people back in person will largely depend on the transition through Hybrid events.

Topics Include:

  1. The art of engaging two audiences – in-person and virtual – in one meeting
  2. Thinking in terms of a sporting event scenario – same game – two very different audiences – fans in the stands and people watching on television.
  3. The budget impacts of a hybrid event
  4. Communication best practices to both audiences
  5. When is the right time to provide a common experience for both audiences and then separate experiences for each?
  6. Maintaining a level of great engagement for both audiences


Watch the Recording

Going Virtual Part 2

August 13, 2020

During this discussion, we will revisit “going virtual” and its continued significant role in our industry moving forward. Topics include:

  • What platforms are you using?
  • Creative virtual networking ideas
  • Hotel / Destination Site Visits
  • Hotel Updates for Technical Support
  • Hybrid Meetings – how to pivot and engage both in-person and virtual attendees together
  • The amazing pivot and resources of DMCs and Production Companies
  • Great Speakers / Entertainers who are excelling at Virtual presentations!


Watch the Recording

Professional Growth & Personal Development

Supporting Each Other Through Challenging Times

October 21, 2021

The past 18 months have been so disruptive to our lives, both professionally and personally. The last 2 months coping with the Delta variant, in particular, have been disheartening and stressful. Enough already! The silver lining has been how our community has united and truly cared about each other. In this FICP Chats we came together to continue to help each other by sharing tips on how we can lift each other up.

Watch the Recording

Navigating Through Transition

August 5, 2021

In this FICP Chats discussion, Jen Squeglia, CMP, moderates a conversation about the tough decisions and obstacles we're navigating through the pandemic and discovering new ways to be agile and make connections with colleagues and stakeholders.

Watch the Recording

The Future of Meetings: Your Career During COVID

September 10, 2020

Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, brings together our Meetings Professionals members and Hospitality Partners to moderate a discussion about focusing on how your career trajectory has been impacted by COVID-19.

Watch the Recording

September 2, 2020
Moderated by: Susannah Frances, CMP, Senior Event Planner, Sun Life
Presented by: Cindy Y. Lo, CEO & Chief Event Strategist, Red Velvet Events, Inc and Taylor Levy, CMP, Regional Director of Sales, Destination South Meetings + Events

As many meeting professionals try to navigate through virtual conferences, hosting in-person events this year or postponing everything until 2021, we want you to know you are not alone! Join a panel of Hospitality Partners, moderated by Susannah Frances (Education Committee Member) as they share how their teams have been working with meeting professionals alike to host the best event possible. Our panelists will provide key takeaways on what their teams have been working on, over the past few months, to follow local and state regulations.
With our industry changing, this provides new opportunities for collaboration and partnership between organizations across the board. Susannah will host an open-discussion with Cindy Lo (Red Velvet Events) and Taylor Levy (Destination South Meetings + Events) on how their collaboration opportunities have grown since COVID-19 and how they’re going to continue to work together.

Watch the Recording

Are You Taking Care of Yourself?

June 11, 2020

Join Jen Squeglia, CMP, FICP Board Member, as she brings together our meetings professionals members and hospitality partners to moderate a discussion about the future of meetings.

The destabilization of our industry and the uncertainty of what lies ahead can really wear on us emotionally and physically – let’s help each other by sharing some of our best self-care tips!

Watch the Webinar

Shared Interest Groups

FICP Shared Interest Groups (SIGs) are independent and self-managed groups on TheNetwork that provide our members with yet another opportunity for professional development and ways to connect with industry colleagues online. SIG members decide on when to meet and what to discuss based on crowd-sourced topics.

Canadian Meetings Professionals

This SIG offers our Canadian meetings professional members an opportunity to discuss, learn and share ideas on the topics specific to the Canadian meetings industry. 

Join Group

Canadian SIG Co-Chairs:
Ann LeBlanc, CMM, CMP, DES Senior Manager, Program & Events, RBC Global Asset Management, Toronto, ONDeena Petrou-Winter, Senior Event Consultant, Retail Markets, Manulife, Waterloo, ON

Event Disruptions Shared Interest Group

This SIG will offers its members an opportunity to discuss, learn and share ideas on the topics of disruptions, contracting, event security, information security, external threats and more. Join if you are interested in connecting with fellow meetings professionals to discuss the best ways to prepare yourself to handle event disruptions.

Join Group

Event Disruptions SIG Co-Chairs:
Karin Ponte, CMP, Senior Meeting Planner, Liberty Mutual
Carlin Putman, CMP, CMM, Meeting and Event Specialist, AIG

CMP Cohort

Preparing for the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) certification can be time consuming and challenging, but you don't have to do it alone! This community on TheNetwork is a support system for you to share thoughts, questions and best practices with your peers. Join the quarterly calls to stay on track with your progres to certification. 

Join Group

CMP Cohort Co-Chairs:
Amanda Brennan, CMP, Senior Meeting Planner, Prudential
Victoria De La Garza, CMP, Assistant Vice President Corporate Events, NEXT Financial Group


How to Join

SIGs and the CMP Cohort are exclusive to FICP meetings professional members. Please send a message to indicating which group you'd like to join.