• See CWT experts at GBTA in San Diego

    Patrick Coleman
    Many of us at Carlson Wagonlit Travel are gearing up for the Global Business Travel Association Convention (GBTA 2013), which will be held in San Diego from Aug. 4-7.

    CWT subject matter experts will moderating and participating in educational sessions at this year’s convention, two of them Monday, Aug. 5, and two of them Tuesday, Aug. 6. We’ll be tackling such hot topics as open booking and strategic meetings management. More about all four below.


    We will also be tweeting live from the convention as well, so follow @CWTAmericas for more of what we’re seeing and what people are talking about, as well as major CWT announcements. For a full, unfiltered look at what people are doing at GBTA, you might want to follow the #GBTA2013 hashtag, which is sure to be a virtual flood of messages. You can see the latest ones here to the right.

    Having participated in national and international conventions in the past in the Twitter age, I can tell you that following a hashtag, even from afar, will give you more than a sense of the enormity of the event.

    Here’s who will be speaking:

    On Monday morning, 10:30 a.m. PT, Nick Vournakis, Senior Vice President for Global Marketing, will moderate a panel on Open Booking in Room 6F. As Nick puts it:

    “Join me during GBTA Convention for what will surely be a lively discussion on the benefits and drawbacks of unmanaged travel. A panel of travel buyers and suppliers will tackle this complex topic in an attempt to answer the ultimate question: do organizations and their travelers stand to lose or gain from a shift to less managed travel?”

    At the same time, Monday morning, 10:30 a.m. PT, Kari Wendel, Senior Director of CWT Meetings & Events – Americas, will moderate a panel on small meetings in Room 1B. Most successful strategic meetings management programs have focused on the larger, more impactful meetings … now the lens is turned to the smaller, routine business meetings. This session will feature panelists from Fortune 500 companies who are achieving success in designing and deploying specific strategies to manage their small meetings and round out their SMM program’s footprint. Check it out and bring your #smmsmarts!

    Turning the calendar to Tuesday …

    On Tuesday morning, 10:30 a.m. PT, Therese Kelleher moderates a panel titled Strategic Meetings Management Can’t Be Ignored in Room 11B.

    Join us to analyze the results of GBTA’s recent research on Strategic Meetings Management Programs. We’ll take a deep dive into the research with an in-depth panel discussion focused on savings methodology, the globalization of SMM programs, and the importance of executive sponsorship, foundational elements and analytics. This session is sponsored by CWT Meetings & Events.

    At the same time, Tuesday morning, 10:30 a.m. PT, in Room 4, Laura Shay is on a panel about corporate culture: Making Culture Work for You.

    Do buzz words like “Travel 2.0,” “Unmanaged Travel” and “Open Booking” confuse you? Join this interactive session to help you assess and identify your company’s corporate culture. Learn about the important role culture plays in determining strategy. This session promises to be thought provoking and will help you prepare for the next generation of travel management with tools and strategies that work in today’s rapidly evolving travel landscape. This panel is sponsored by Carlson Rezidor Hotels.

    We hope you’ll join us. But if you can’t, follow us on Twitter and follow the #GBTA2013 hashtag to get a flavor of what’s going on at this year’s convention!

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