By Jorge J. J. Martínez
The Guatemala Conventions Bureau has its first woman president; she is Esther Brol, who will direct the promotional organization during the 2021 to 2023 period.
Esther has held different positions in the Guatemalan bureau for 10 years. A polyglot, she has a master’s degree in communication and media, having for 34 years used strategic communication and public relations skills in her business, Communication Consulting Group.
“I called my strategic communications clients and told them I was going to be president of the bureau, and they didn’t even know what it was. My main objective is to enhance the Guatemalan community’s understanding of the MICE industry’s impact, and encourage both private and government sectors to bring all types of meetings to Guatemala,” commented Ms. Brol.
Due to the pandemic and relations with the authorities, the conventions bureau has experienced challenges over the last two years. Fortunately meetings are now happening safely and political issues are a thing of the past. The next step is to gain visibility for the bureau and the country’s meetings industry.
“One of the bureau’s objectives is related to governance; a few months ago the Guatemalan Institute of Tourism got a new director who is focused on working with the private sector. We will update MICE’s joint strategy,” explained Brol.
Among the tasks for resuscitating MICE in Guatemala is setting up meetings that will bring together key people from the industry and authorities from external relations, commerce, and tourism in addition to ambassadors and decision makers.
“Much of the human resources sector has left or moved to other industries or countries; a challenge for reactivation is to regain the human element, which will take preparation. To this end we are strengthening training, advocacy, participation, management, and so on,” reported Guatemala’s conventions bureau president.
All personnel pertaining to the value chain of tourism and the MICE industry are 100 percent vaccinated, at least in Guatemala City, although that’s not the case in the surrounding areas. Antigua has a high rate of vaccination, the second highest in the country.
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