For those North American Million Dollar Round Table members who gripe about the strong “international flavor” of MDRT’s annual meeting, you now have an alternative.
Nearly 500 MDRT members gathered in Boston back in November for the first-annual MDRT EDGE, a brand-new meeting focused exclusively on addressing the unique challenges faced by financial professionals in the United States and Canada.
Designed to Engage, Develop, Grow and Empower (EDGE), the innovative meeting format combined individualization, peer-to-peer networking, and insightful presentations to offer each attendee a fully customized experience.
“MDRT launched this groundbreaking new meeting that ensured each attendee left Boston with exactly what they need to take their career success to the next level,” said Ross Vanderwolf, president of MDRT (pictured above). “With 98% of attendees stating they enjoyed the MDRT EDGE meeting and 96% planning to attend next year and to recommend the meeting to their colleagues, it was a huge success with a big impact on our membership.”
Attendees were matched to small peer groups, each armed with a personalized schedule designed to maximize conversation and learning. The “divide and conquer” format allowed each participant to focus on the speakers most applicable to their career priorities while learning from their peers attending different sessions. This way, they never felt they missed insightful information from other speakers. In addition to info sharing, the peer groups helped attendees develop their network with new high-quality connections and allow continued learning beyond the meeting.
To help attendees navigate the external influences impacting their businesses, Anchor Sessions provided large-format keynote presentations from experts across a number of topics. In the Digital Leadership and Innovation Anchor Session, Erik Qualman, a best-selling author and speaker known for his expertise in technology trends, discussed digital integration and consumer expectations in the digital age.
In the 2018 Mid-Term Election Results Impact for Financial Services Anchor Session, Andrew Friedman, a political and legislative expert, shared his perspective on the outcome of the U.S. midterm elections less than 24 hours after Election Day and discussed the government’s role in tax, fiscal and retirement policies.
“I feel that the content of this meeting has definitely been timely,” said Trish Lalonde, an attendee. “There are some hot buttons that are going on in our industry. They address them head on, and I can’t wait to come back.”
Attendees dove deeper into their learning with “Track Talks” and “Workshops” these sessions focused on specific business related-topics with presentations, group discussions and practice tasks. Members first used radios and earbuds to participate in Track Talks, then applied learnings to their own practice during extended Workshops. Members and workshop leaders continued conversations and with hands-on collaboration to finalize business plans and implement changes to their practices after sessions ended.
MDRT continued its commitment to giving back during EDGE with a partnership between the MDRT Foundation, and Boston-area non-profit Life is Good Kids Foundation. EDGE attendees participated in a service event to create 500 customized gift packages with hand-written notes as a thank you to the individuals who work with children of trauma. The MDRT Foundation also provided a $25,000 grant to support the organization’s ongoing mission to positively impact the quality of care delivered to the most vulnerable children through partnerships with leading childcare organizations.
“The EDGE meeting was a great representation of MDRT’s culture of sharing and learning to build a strong community for members’ growth,” said Regina Beyoda, the Vice President of MDRT. “MDRT is investing its valuable resources in the North American membership’s growth with new events, an ever-growing set of best practice content in the Resource Zone and the MDRT Member app – the brand new member benefit. There’s no better time to join MDRT as we drive premiere financial services professionals to the cutting edge of the profession.”
The members-only 2019 MDRT EDGE meeting will be held Oct. 21-23 in New York City. To become a member of MDRT or learn more about MDRT’s qualification requirements, go to www.mdrt.org.
About MDRT: Founded in 1927, MDRT, The Premier Association of Financial Professionals®, is a global, independent association of more than 66,000 of the world’s leading life insurance and financial services professionals from more than 500 companies in 72 nations and territories. MDRT members demonstrate exceptional professional knowledge, strict ethical conduct, and outstanding client service. MDRT membership is recognized internationally as the standard of excellence in the life insurance and financial services business. For more information, please visit www.mdrt.org and follow them on Twitter @MDRtweet.