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| Written by Veronica Ferguson

Myth vs. Reality: Strategic Meetings Management (SMM)

Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) is a systematic approach to managing all aspects of an organization’s meetings and events. It is a way to ensure that meetings and events align with the organization’s strategic goals, are cost-effective, and meet the needs of attendees.

While SMM programs are incredibly effective and bring great benefits to an organization, they can also be confusing or—let’s be honest—overwhelming when first starting out. Intent Strategy Group (ISG), M&IW’s consulting division, consists of expert SMM consultants ready to set the record straight and deliver winning solutions. In the latest edition of the Myth vs. Reality series, ISG’s Lindsay Buchanan, CMP, and Joann Fegley, MBA, address common SMM misconceptions.

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Myth: SMM is only for large organizations.

Reality: SMM can be beneficial for organizations of all sizes.

SMM can help all organizations save time and money, and it can also help them to improve the quality of their meetings and events. Smaller organizations may see even more significant benefits from SMM. Because their team members often have additional job responsibilities outside of event planning, they may not have the time or resources to most effectively manage meetings on their own.

Myth: SMM is too complicated.

Reality: It doesn’t have to be!

SMM doesn’t have to be complicated. Several SMM software solutions are available that are easy to use and can be customized to meet the needs of any organization. With the right SMM software, organizations can easily manage their meetings and events from start to finish. There’s also no need to take it all on at once. Implementing an SMM can also be done in phases, making it much more feasible and more likely to have improved user buy-in.

Myth: SMM is too expensive and isn’t worth the ROI.

Reality: While there are upfront costs, the benefits make them more than worthwhile.

Creating an SMM involves upfront costs for technology, implementation, adoption, and training, but the long-term benefits outweigh the initial investment. SMM generates cost savings, improves overall compliance, identifies preferred vendors and suppliers, and provides better visibility and control over meeting spend, ultimately resulting in a positive return on investment.

Myth: SMM restricts creativity and flexibility.

Reality: It can be customized to meet your needs.

SMM establishes processes and guidelines to enhance meeting quality. With a customized SMM, the process is designed to meet the unique needs, culture, and goals of your organization. This ultimately allows for creativity, innovation, and flexibility within the established framework.

Myth: SMM only needs technology.

Reality: Technology is just one part of SMM.

Technology serves as the enabler for SMM, while stakeholders play a critical role in developing and defining meeting management processes, policies, and data tracking. SMM technology makes these processes dynamic and actionable.


Headshot of Lindsay Buchanan, CMP

Lindsay Buchanan, CMP

Meetings Management Consultant

Intent Strategy Group

Headshot of Joann Fegley

Joann Fegley, MBA

Meetings Management Consultant

Intent Strategy Group

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