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Let’s Build Business in DC!

It’s July, can you believe it? Where did the year go?? It seems like just yesterday I was shoveling snow in a winter wonderland. Now, summer has made its grand entrance, and I’m realizing that the end of my year as SMPS Seattle President is drawing to a close.

I’m experiencing a mix of emotions – gratitude, for the board members and volunteers who gave their all to ensure this year was a success; excitement, about handing the torch to Heidi Maki; regret, recalling all the things I wanted to but did not accomplish; and appreciation, for this amazing opportunity.

And as if it weren’t enough to be given a chance to grow my leadership and mentorship skills, to learn about the operations of a board, to practice my public speaking, to attend our many wonderful educational and networking events, I also get to travel to conferences!

Next up: Build Business.

If you haven’t heard, Build Business is the SMPS National Conference, and it’s held in a different location each year. The 2019 conference will be held in Washington DC from July 30 – August 2nd. Nearly 1,000 SMPS members and affiliates will gather to talk all about marketing and business development innovation, best practices, and trends. Additionally, the Evening of Excellence is held the Thursday evening during the conference. This festive celebration highlights the most outstanding marketing projects and individuals from all across the country. It’s a thrilling night and many of Seattle’s members have been recognized over the years at this annual event!

I still remember my first Build Business in Los Angeles, which I was able to attend thanks to the Fellows Scholarship. I was relatively new to my firm and the industry, and the scholarship opened my eyes to all that SMPS has to offer and more. I spent a full day with Amy Matsumoto at Universal Studios in the dry heat of LA; the 3-hour wait for the Studio Tour remains one of my favorite SMPS memories! That memory will come full circle, since Amy was the recipient of the 2019 Fellows Scholarship and will help represent Seattle in DC this year! We’re already planning our post-conference museum trips and government establishment tours.

If it’s not already clear, I’m a big fan of the opportunities SMPS has given me. I’ve been so grateful to the organization and to my firm, Weber Thompson, for supporting my participation in this association of savvy professionals. It was roughly five years ago that my boss suggested become a member and get involved in a committee, and I’m so glad she did. I’ve learned and grown personally and professionally, and I’ve made many friends. And while my year as Chapter President is coming to a close, I know there are many more SMPS adventures that await.

So I urge you, if you aren’t already a member, now is a great time to join. If you’re a member and you’re not on a committee, what are you waiting for? If you’re “SMPS-curious” and don’t know where to begin, I have a very actionable suggestion for you: Join us on September 17th at the annual ‘Kick-Off’ event at Olson Kudig’s office. It’ll be a crash course in all things SMPS Seattle, but more than anything, it’s a great excuse to get together with the folks who might become your new friends and colleagues. Before you know it, you’ll be waiting in a three-hour line at Universal Studios with Amy Matsumoto and you’ll never look back.

 –   Erin Hatch, CPSM, SMPS Seattle President

Erin Hatch is SMPS Seattle’s 2018/2019 Chapter President. When she’s not working with the board of directors to keep the chapter humming along, she’s the Marketing Director at Weber Thompson, an interdisciplinary architecture firm in Seattle. You can reach her by email at [email protected]

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