Education

Robert J. Wilson is President of Meeting Evolution, an Overland Park, Kansas based Technology Company that was founded in 2008. Meeting Evolution is a web-based Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) platform that manages the entire lifecycle of an event based upon APEX industry standards as defined by the Convention Industry Council. Meeting Evolution integrates global sourcing, custom hotel contracting, meeting consolidation / leveraged spend and data management. Our focus at Meeting Evolution is to leverage technology and business intelligence that drives team efficiencies and increased productivity for organizations implementing SMM solutions.

Rob is very involved in the meeting and hospitality industry, including Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), Professional Conference Management Association (PCMA), Meeting Professionals International (MPI), Toastmasters International and serves on the Convention Industry Council (CIC) APEX Technology Committee. Rob speaks at many industry events and contributes articles to industry trade publications.

Rob earned his Six Sigma Green Belt when he was a Systems Engineer for Honeywell FM&T in the early 2000s and heavily relies upon the importance of process mapping when designing Meeting Evolution technology solutions.

Rob earned his Lean Six Sigma Green Belt and Lean Six Sigma Black Belt in 2016.

Rob founded Lean Six Sigma for Meeting Professionals in March of 2017.

Rob graduated from Drury University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.

Rob has spoken at the following industry association annual meetings:

  • MPI
  • GBTA
  • PCMA
  • SpinCon
  • AIBTM

Robert Wilson

Lean Six Sigma Black Belt

President

Meeting Evolution

913-897-8234

rwilson@meetingevolution.net

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Lean Six Sigma for Meeting Professionals

 

Meeting Evolution Courses

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style

Lean Six Sigma is a combination of identifying waste and reducing variation in a process to deliver a product or service to a customer consistently. Our workshops help you learn how the techniques and tools of process improvement that transformed corporations like Motorola, General Electric, Toyota and others can be applied to managing the many aspects of your meetings.

Click here to see a list of these courses.

Strategic Meetings Management (SMM)

understanding what SMM is and how to get the most out of the information you gather in the process of sourcing, eRFPs, contracting, budgeting and reporting to define your value to the organization.

Click here to see a list of these courses.

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Courses

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: Six Sigma 101

For an organization to achieve a high level of success, there must be processes, metrics and people in place to deliver that efficiency. Six Sigma is a methodology adopted by many manufacturing companies to define processes and improve efficiencies. Adopted by major corporations like Motorola and GE, the Six Sigma tools have been adapted to apply to all processes within an organization as a means to identify procedures, improve efficiencies and provide standardized reporting methodologies.

Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) is an effort by our industry to provide structure to meetings and events that to date has loosely organized. The Six Sigma approach provides a proven methodology used by industries worldwide that can be directly applied to our industry and provide the tools to deploy a successful SMM program.

During this session, we will talk about what Six Sigma is, review Six Sigma tools that can be used to help solve common problems in the meetings and events industry, and present a process mapping exercise that provides an opportunity to use Six Sigma tools to plan a meeting.

Learner Outcomes

  • Understanding of Six Sigma and its impact on SMM
  • Exposure to common Six Sigma tools used to solve problems (SIPOC, DMAIC, VOC)
  • Review Process Mapping and its application to meeting management
  • Understand how to apply Six Sigma methodologies to meetings and events
  • Learn specific metrics to define, measure and report success

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: In process

Course Description

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: LEAN 101

Meetings and events are projects with a lot of moving parts that often are bloated with redundancy, missed communications and can be a tremendous waste of time. Most meeting planners can quickly think of a few events that should be made LEAN!

LEAN manufacturing is a management philosophy derived mostly from the Toyota Production System (TPS) –which is renowned for its focus on reduction of the identified wastes at Toyota. The move to LEAN methods improved overall customer value and significantly improved efficiencies. The steady growth of Toyota, from a small company to the world’s largest automaker, has focused attention on how it has achieved this success by deploying the LEAN methodology.

This class walks through the typical lifecycle of an event starting with the request, sourcing, contracting, event planning, and post event activities to identify the wasted efforts and activities in each process. We will then look at simple steps that can be applied to create a LEAN event planning process.

Strategic Meeting Management (SMM) is an industry effort to provide structure and value to organizations based on best practices that are still being identified. LEAN is a proven philosophy used by the largest companies in the world to re-evaluate processes and operate with only what is needed to deliver product or services.

By applying the LEAN approach to SMM and how we manage our meetings and events we can achieve significant efficiencies and improved processes to assist us in delivering more value to our stakeholders.

Learner Outcomes

  • Understand the LEAN philosophy
  • How to identify the waste in processes used to manage meetings and events in your organization
  • How to apply LEAN to improve your processes and efficiencies for your meetings and events
  • How to begin deploying LEAN in your organization

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: In process

Course Description

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: LEAN Six Sigma

LEAN thinking focuses on enhancing value for the customer by improving and smoothing the process flow and eliminating waste.

Six Sigma is a systematic and robust approach to improvement, which focuses on the customer and other key stakeholders.

By bringing LEAN and Six Sigma together you get a comprehensive set of principles that are used by small, medium and large companies to evaluate processes, identify and eliminate waste in order to change their organization to deliver higher quality products and services to their customers.

During this session we will apply the principles of LEAN and Six Sigma to meetings and events:

  • The first part of the session will be using the Six Sigma tools and LEAN to identify waste in the event planning process.
  • In the second part of the session we will break up into groups and pick projects to apply these principles to the event planning process.

This class will provide many examples of how to change the “This is the way we have always done it” mindset to one that implements change into their processes to improve efficiencies and the quality of the meetings and events we deliver to our stakeholders.

Learner Outcomes

  • Understand the LEAN and Six Sigma approach to identify waste and improve processes
  • Hands-on activities to apply these methodologies to how we manage meetings and events
  • How to use Six Sigma tools to improve our processes and efficiencies
  • Learn how to change your environment from being people dependent to process dependent.

Length: 180 minutes, 2 x 75 minutes sessions with a 30 minute break

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: Applied for certification

Course Description

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: Process Management and SIPOC

Whether we think so or not, an event is a project. Six Sigma has numerous tools to help you with managing projects. BUT step one is understanding the current process of how an event gets planned in your organization.

Process mapping is a very useful tool to help document, understand and visualize how things get done in your organization.

During this session we will go through the steps of creating a process map using the SIPOC categories: Suppliers, Inputs, Process, Outputs and Customers.

Learner Outcomes

  • How to create a process map
  • How to use a process map to identify areas for improvement
  • More understanding of Six Sigma tools
  • Who is your customer

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: Applied for certification

Course Description

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: Do you RUMBA?

Is your RFP Reasonable? Can the person receiving the RFP Understand what you are asking for? Is the information you are going to receive Measurable? When you get responses back from your RFP are they Believable? And if all of the pieces come together, is the event Attainable or Achievable?

RUMBA is an acronym that provides guidelines that can be used when putting together an RFP, a contract, an event, really anything that you or your organization or trying to achieve when working on a project (event).

Events are projects that can easily use the tools from the Six Sigma tool box and during this session will learn how to apply these tools while planning your next successful event.

Learner Outcomes

  • Evaluate your RFP based upon RUMBA guidelines
  • Understand the importange of the event objective before sending the RFP
  • Clearly communicate your event needs in your RFP
  • Better understanding of the value of Six Sigma process managementCourse Description

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: Applied for certification

Course Description

Meeting Planning Lean Six Sigma Style: Process Management the DMAIC way

Six Sigma is a powerful tool to help you and your organization manage processes to operate more efficiently, effectively and productively.

During this session we will talk about the following steps to help ensure a successful event consistently:

  • Define – Why are you having this event? Think Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Measure – Can you measure each step an event will take during the planning process?
  • Analyze – Do you analyze the information available during each step? Can each step be made better, easier or ask the question, Is this step necessary?
  • Improve – Did you improve your process? Do you have a baseline of the current process for planning an event?
  • Control – What is in place to help you and your organization control, oversee, manage the lifecycle of an event?

Learner Outcomes:

  • The principles of how DMAIC is used in event planning
  • How to analyze data that have available to you about your events
  • Understanding of process management
  • More knowledge about Six Sigma tools

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: Applied for certification

Course Description

Strategic Meetings Management (SMM) Courses

Using Business Intelligence to Deliver Strategic Meetings Management

Organizations are taking a closer look at their marketing budgets, especially the significant portion that is allocated to meetings and events – surveys indicate more than 20%. This increased focus on “value and accountability” has placed a higher value on tracking the right data, managing the meeting spend and providing reports clearly showing the ROI.

With all of the discussions about ‘Big Data’, many organizations fall short in both tracking and reporting on their meeting spend.

In this interactive workshop, attendees will learn how to connect data that is typically kept in silos, leverage business intelligence for maximum negotiations, and create specific metrics to define, measure and report success

Length: 60 – 90 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 to 8

Clock Hours: 1.5

eRFP Best Practices

Love them or hate them eRFP’s are here to stay.

This interactive workshop will focus on sharing ideas on how to get the most out of our eRFP’s by reviewing trends dealing with response times, availability and contracting.

We will discuss the industry standards that have been defined by the Convention Industry Council (CIC) for preparing and tracking eRFP’s as well as the proper formatting of the information you are providing.

Understanding the value of your meetings, the factors impacting the industry, and how suppliers evaluate your eRFP’s will provide you with a better chance of getting your eRFP reviewed and considered by the suppliers you have selected.

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 to 8

Clock Hours: 1.0

Course Description

Using Competitive Analytics to leverage your buying power

The new economic conditions, introduction of Strategic Meeting Management (SMM) and the increased expectations by senior management has thrust ROI back into the spot light.

With revenue management a critical part of how suppliers evaluate your RFP in this highly competitive market, it is more important than ever that planners have a complete picture of their overall meeting spend to help them get the best deal for their events. Tracking spend by property, geographic location and by chain can be invaluable when presenting the value of your meetings to a supplier.

This workshop is about the ‘big data’ that should be readily available to a planner or planning organization to make the best business decision for a successful event. Typically this data is kept in individual silos as planners work through planning an event.

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: In process

Course Description

Industry Standards: Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX)

The Convention Industry Council (CIC) created the Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX) in an effort to define common terminology and lay the foundation for technology companies to implement these standards.

The APEX group has defined numerous standards that include:

  • RFP
  • Housing and Registration
  • Event Specification Guide
  • Post Event
  • Contracts
  • Glossary

This workshop reviews what these standards look like, what technology solutions have deployed them, how these standards are being used, and how you can play a part in increasing awareness of industry standards.

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 to 8

Clock Hours: In Progress

Course Description

Technology in the Meeting and Events Industry

Technology has become a way of life for most of us – in many ways we don’t give a second thought to all of the ‘technology’ involved in our every day – from our mobile phones, our cars, tablets, PCs and computers.

Technology capabilities are known to double every two years – Moore’s Law – and yet some events can take 12 months or more to plan before they actually happen.

And while we have come to accept and expect that our mobile phone and its interface will change frequently, we often use the same old tools, spreadsheets, documents and processes we’ve used for years to manage the details of our meetings.

With attendees expecting everything delivered to their phone or tablet at your next meeting, how can you stay on top of the changing technologies and make sure you are using the best solution for your meeting and events?

In this workshop we will review technology in the meetings and events industry that is used for sourcing, event marketing, social media, lead retrieval, attendee registration, event planning, mobile apps, post event reporting, and more.

Length: 60 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: In process

Course Description

How Hotels Value Your Meetings

Market conditions have changed significantly and now planners are dealing with a shorter lead time on their meetings and hotels are dealing with limited space, management companies that set profit targets, and a much more competitive environment.

It is important for planners to understand how hotels and their ‘revenue managers’ view your meetings so you can structure your RFPs to have the best chance of being considered.

In this interactive session, attendees will learn how to maximize negotiation results, regardless of shifts in the marketplace. This includes how to assess your leverage based on hotel revenue management criteria and creating an action plan and strategic negotiation process that will add value to your meetings and bottom line.

Length: 60 – 90 minutes

Room Set: Rounds of 6 or 8

Clock Hours: In process

Course Description