Content & Connections: Dispatch from the 2019 MRG Summit

Energy. Yes, the word may be considered a little vague. But time and again, when we host events for the MRG community, it’s what we hear about from those who attended – and it’s what we remember ourselves. The energy at last week’s MRG Summit 2019 in our hometown of Portland, Maine was certainly at an electrifying level.

We’re still hearing from those who attended – from longtime partners to nearly-certified newbies, and from neighboring towns to across the Atlantic – about what made the event meaningful for them.

A few themes stand out:

The content.

The Summit was a single day, but we approached it with big ambitions. Sessions were brief (no more than 45 minutes, many just 15 or 20) and informal, so we could cover the widest breadth of content possible. One of the highlights was the morning’s kick-off research presentation, where Maria Brown and Tricia Naddaff shared some of the most fascinating recent findings. There were some “wow” moments on the topic of self-confidence – especially when we revealed that our studies show that there’s no correlation between felt self-confidence and conveyed self-confidence. (If you missed the Summit, you can catch up on some of that content here.) They also shared some brief findings on how leaders effectively balance relationships and results (hint: very few do!) and the imperative for a shared leadership model, and some interesting new findings on the types of leaders who have the potential to derail. We’ll be diving deeper into those topics in this fall’s webinars, now open for registration.

There were many more topics covered at the Summit itself, but for in-depth content, some of our partners chose to attend Master Classes in the IDI and the LEA. Despite a hotel evacuation (!) during the morning of our LEA class, we still packed a lot of stellar skill-building into the classes, and they were overwhelmingly well-received. We’re looking forward to the debut of an online version of these classes later in the year to make them available to a wider audience, so watch your email for dates!

The news.

At our last international conference in Vienna in 2017, we announced the impending arrival of Momentum and the IDI Team Development Report. Now that those products have arrived and are being actively used by partners around the world, we shared updates on them and even heard from some users themselves, who shared their stories about the impact the new IDI report can have with teams.

But of course we also had a few new things to unveil. One is a brand-new LEA 360 Composite Report, which will provide vital insights to help you work with teams using the LEA in new ways. It’s entering the beta testing phase now and will be available in early 2020. (Get in touch with us if you’re eager to be part of testing, or you’d just like to learn more.)

At the very end of the day, I also had the pleasure of providing a first look at the MRG Knowledge Base, a completely new way to access MRG content – from research to marketing materials, and interpretation guides to help with Quest. In the new Knowledge Base, it will all be fully searchable, making it simpler to find what you’re looking for and giving you ample opportunities to provide feedback, so we can easily create more of what you like, and adapt and update what’s not working. This system, too, is entering the Beta testing phase, and we’re looking forward to hearing what our users think before we launch it to all of our partners later in 2019.

The opportunity to shape MRG’s future.

One of the key elements we built into this year’s event was discussion, with an emphasis on gathering ideas and input from our community. I think my hands may still be cramping up from the furious note-taking during these active discussions. That’s no surprise – there were people in the room who have been working with MRG for decades, and with all of that experience, they had ample insights and perspectives to share. From the way data is presented to what types of assessments they’d like to see from us in the future, we developed a wish list that ranges from the simple to the thought-provoking. Unpacking that list and determining how we record and address these ideas in the days following the Summit is, genuinely, one of the greatest joys we get from these events. While there are no shortage of ideas within the MRG team itself, hearing from our partners in the community gives us an unparalleled jolt and gets us thinking in brand-new ways. We’re looking forward to the ideas from 2019 turning into the big announcements of 2020 and beyond!

The connections.

Earlier this year, MRG co-founder Jim Lomac wrote about how vital and important live events remain, even in this digital age where we have an array of ways to connect with each other. Last week’s event seemed to affirm his take. Even with just a single full day together, we made sure to carve out some time for everyone to connect with each other, and for us to connect with our partners who – this is no exaggeration – are like family to us. We kicked off the evening before the Summit with a casual open house at the MRG HQ, where we were proud to show off our recently renovated offices and share one of Maine’s true delicacies: the Whoopie Pie. We made time to connect throughout the day, but were all happy to relax over snacks and beverages during a cocktail hour to close out the Summit. Many drifted into groups to continue the conversations over dinner in Portland (which has received international attention recently for its restaurant scene, so it made for a tasty place to break bread together). Over the years, we’ve seen the relationships formed at MRG conferences turn into both friendships and fruitful professional partnerships. We look forward to seeing¬† what comes of the bonds formed and strengthened in Portland last week!

We look forward to announcing future events for the MRG community soon.¬†In the meantime, if you’re attending a conference or event where you’d like to see MRG, send us a note! We are always looking for new opportunities to connect with like-minded people in the world of leadership development. Better yet, if you’re hosting or organizing an event where you’d like to have MRG’s participation, let’s talk about how we can help! We’ve traveled around the world to add value of our clients’ events, we never fail to learn something new ourselves in the process.

About the author

Lucy is the Head of Marketing at MRG. She's a passionate people person who talks with her hands even when she's on the phone. She will not rest until everyone on earth has taken their IDI.

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