FastFive – October 2017
Michael Shannon CMP
Director, Business Development, Northeast US
Business Events Canada

1. What was your favorite professional achievement of 2016/2017?
I would have to say for me it was now coming into a place with Business Events Canada where now, two years in, it all seemed to come together between 2016/2017. My knowledge of the country and all it offers, the partners I get to work with each day and the clients and friends I get to connect with all over at industry events. I have been in the role of “learning” a new position in my career, but learning a whole country…that took some time and patience. Our approach at Business Events Canada is truly unique in that we have elevated the conversation within the fabric of meeting strategy and aligning with key sectors that not only embrace some of the best that Canada has to offer, but can truly enhance the core of the business sector that this aligns to. One such sector is of course, Life Sciences.

2. What story in our industry impacted you the most in 2016/2017 and why?
There is no doubt that the tragic events of October 2017 in Vegas has left a tremendous impact on me and so many others. Not only because it happened in Las Vegas, which I have worked with in my past, but because it tore at the core fabric of what drives our industry. People simply connecting in what was supposed to be a very comfortable space of enjoyment and engagement with mutual interests. While I know that so many are dealing with such a profound and tragic loss, to change what we do and how we do it so well as an industry, will just fuel what all of that negative energy seeks to create, mayhem. We cannot let negative energy win and must find a way to rise above this and continue to elevate conversation and dialog around positive change and meaningful experiences where people can feel safe and we can leave the world a little better for the generations yet to come.

3. Who was a mentor for you and what is a bit of their advice/instruction you often refer to?
It is hard to single out one mentor for me. I have been fortunate to have so many wonderful people in my life that have shared knowledge and wisdom with me. I was lucky to have understood early on that hard work and perseverance will often lead to positive results. I have also always embraced a lesson that had been shared with me over the years by several people I respected and trusted and that is simply that no matter how challenging the road and no matter how the obstacles may be on the path, by staying true to the mission, you will always come out a better person for the conviction to the purpose. I have always believed this. In each experience and opportunity, we need to find the positive in the lesson and see the best to take out of it.

4. What are your top 3 favorite cities to visit and why?
This too is so tough as I have been so fortunate to have traveled to many parts of this wonderful planet, each offering its own unique experiences. This is not cliché at all, but I truly love Canada and all the wonderful cities I get to experience every time I go there. There is so much to see and explore all over.

When it comes to overall experiences, I am an outdoors person to the core. That’s anything from the mountains to the beaches. Cant really say that’s three cities I know, but theres so much out there to see and do, it wouldn’t be fair to limit it to just three.

About Michael

Michael Shannon, CMP, is Director, Business Development, Northeast for Business Events Canada, a division of Destination Canada. His responsibilities include promoting Canada as Meetings and Events Destination from the Mid-Atlantic to the Northeastern US.

A thirty+ year veteran of the hospitality industry and graduate of the University of Denver, School of Hotel and Restaurant Management, Michael has spent his career in a variety of hotel operational and sales & marketing positions. Michael has worked for MGM Resorts International, Westin Hotels & Resorts and the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau. In addition, Michael spent over eight years on the intermediary side of the business in a meeting & event planning company.

Active in Meeting Professionals International since 1994, he served on the board of directors and is a Past-President of the New Jersey Chapter. Michael has also Chaired several MPI International Committees and served a three-year term on the International Board of Directors. Honors from the New Jersey Chapter include Chapter Supplier of the Year as well as the recipient of the Meeting Professional of the Year.

Michael has been published in The Meeting Professional, and has presented programs on topics such as: Starting your own Business; Negotiation Skills; Everyday Ethics for the Meeting & Sales Professional and How to Achieve Work Life Balance. Michael has been a Platinum Series Speaker at various MPI Chapters as well as a speaker at MPI International Conferences and served on faculty for MPI’s Institutes program. Michael resides in New Jersey with his wife Michelle and two children, Ashley and Matthew and their beloved dogs, Bella and Scout.