IMEX expands She Means Business program

i By March 8, 2022 No Comments

She Means Business (SMB), one of IMEX’s signature events, is being expanded in response to the significant broadening of the conversation around diversity in the global meetings and events industry that has taken place in recent years.

Renamed, She Means Business, a Conversation for All, IMEX and its partners, tw magazine and MPI, are inviting everyone, no matter how they identify, to take a fresh look at diversity, gender equality and female empowerment. The expanded program offers sessions on all three days of IMEX in Frankfurt.

Sessions already on the program’s agenda include:

She Means Business program at IMEX in Frankfurt is being expanded to include everyone. Image here is a headshot of Marta Games, Deputy Executive Director, Sales & Marketing Division, viparis. Gomes is taking part in one of the program's panel discussions.

Marta Gomes, viparis

Women seek conversation with men about diversity and gender equality” – This discussion brings people together in a spirit of open collaboration. Participants are:

  • Marta Gomes, Deputy Executive Director, Sales and Marketing Division, viparis
  • Mike Sealy, Global Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Informa Markets
  • Katharina Path, Marketing Manager-Conventions, Frankfurt Convention Bureau
  • Sherrif Karamat, CAE, President & CEO, PCMA (Professional Convention Management Association)
She Means Business program is being expanded at IMEX in Frankfurt 2022. Image here is a headshot photograph of Ulrike Tondorf,, Head of Brand Activation and Engagement, Bayer AG.  Tondorf is one of the panelists in a She Means Business session.

Ulrike Tondorf, Bayer AG

Future of work: Diversity’s role in creating the work culture of tomorrow” – Sponsored by Meeting Destination Vienna, this panel will examine what lies ahead in the workplace. Panelists are:

  • Moderator: Jessie States, Vice-President, MPI
  • Ulrike Tondorf, Head of Brand Activation and Engagement, Bayer AG
  • Tanja Auernhamer, Head of Association Communications, bvik
  • Christian Woronka, Director, Vienna Convention Bureau
  • Juliette Wangalachi, Event Manager, Solar Promotion

Crises, resilience and social barriers

Mental health is another strong focus of the She Means Business three-day program, which will feature an open exchange on how to respond to crises and build resilience. Social barriers are also examined by speakers including Professor Dr. Ing Carsten Busch, president of HTW Berlin, in “Breaking the Glass Ceiling.”

Carina Bauer, IMEX Group CEO explains: “What started off as a small, female-focused event for the business events industry, has now grown to become a broader movement for all people, regardless of gender identity, to discuss how we as an industry can be more inclusive. Everyone’s invited to shape this conversation. The debate about inclusivity and diversity remains as important as ever and poses real challenges for the global meetings industry. We’re proud and excited by the partnerships and speakers we have in place who have created this timely and powerful program.”

Kerstin Wuensch, editor-in-chief of tw magazine, is part of a panel presenting research into women in the events industry. Results of a new survey will be compared to findings from a similar study in 2017. The intention is to highlight what has changed (and what hasn’t) as well as the current business issues around gender equality.

“The pandemic has brought about inequalities between women and men,” explains Kerstin. “This makes it more difficult to achieve Goal 5 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG): Gender Equality. At She Means Business we want to exchange ideas about diversity and gender equality and start to work together.”

The survey, by tw tagungswirtschaft and m+a report by the dfv media group and the IMEX Group, runs until March 25, 2022. Everyone is invited to take part.

She Means Business, a Conversation for All takes place during IMEX in Frankfurt, May 31 – June 2, 2022. The business events community can register here for free.