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Current Opportunities

Director, Business Event Sales | Explore Edmonton

The Organization

Explore Edmonton Corporation is Edmonton’s Destination Management and Marketing Organization (DMMO). Explore Edmonton Corporation has a mission to promote Edmonton’s rich history, enhance visitor experience, and endorse year-round visitation. Explore Edmonton is committed to inclusion, diversity, equity, and access, and recognizes that those ideals support service excellence. As an essential element of their DNA, Explore Edmonton welcomes the unique contributions that candidates can bring in terms of diverse backgrounds and lived experiences, and encourages applications that represent the diversity of their community.

In 2019, Explore Edmonton’s total economic impact was over $260 million, and the corporation helped drive $1.7 billion towards a diverse visitor economy. The corporation strives for excellence in all they do, resulting in the management of two award-winning venues, the Edmonton EXPO Centre and the Edmonton Convention Centre. The Edmonton EXPO Centre and the Edmonton Convention Centre serve as spirited, energetic hubs for performances, conferences, and non-profit initiatives. Explore Edmonton leverages sustainable approaches to attract visitors, major events, meetings, and conventions to our city, while strategically marketing enterprises that are unique to Edmonton. Additionally, the corporation partners with an array of event organizers, businesses, and professional associations to bolster visitor experiences and quality of life for Edmontonians.

 

Purpose:Increase the economic impact of the visitor-based economy in Edmonton.
Mission:To showcase and inspire more people to visit Edmonton for exceptional experiences, while also enriching the quality of life for residents and creating economic prosperity.
Vision:Edmonton will be a destination of choice, delivering year-round transformational visitor & guest experiences.

 

Explore Edmonton respectfully acknowledges that they are located within Treaty 6 territory and Métis Nation of Alberta Region 4. They acknowledge the land as the traditional home for many Indigenous Peoples, including the Cree, Blackfoot, Métis, Nakota Sioux, Dene, Saulteaux, Anishinaabe, Inuit and many others whose histories, languages, and cultures continue to influence our vibrant community.

For further information about Explore Edmonton, please visit: About Explore Edmonton

 

The Opportunity

Reports to:

 

Executive Director, Event & Business Growth under the leadership of Vice President, Destination Development & Marketing (Visitor Economy)
Direct Reports:

 

4: Business Development and Account Managers | Administration Specialists | Market Liaisons
Indirect Reports:2
Location:Edmonton, Alberta

 

Mandate

The Business Events unit sits within a broader visitor economy team under one leader. It works in tandem with Explore Edmonton’s event development and sports and culture teams. The primary function of the business events team is to drive measurable convention, group and business events to Edmonton by working collaboratively with regional hotel groups, tourism businesses, stakeholders, and economic development partners. Alignment with partners such as Edmonton Global and Business Events Canada will be key.

Reporting to the Executive Director, Event and Business Growth, the Director, Business Event Sales is a leadership position responsible for delivering measurable economic impact for Edmonton and its tourism businesses. As Edmonton and its tourism partners move towards recovery from the pandemic, considerable attention is needed to secure future business events that deliver city-wide and significant tourism revenues.

The Director, Business Event Sales will be a seasoned salesperson – they will not only drive business but ensure Explore Edmonton seeks and secures the right business, sectors and clients that align with their principles. In doing so, the Director will raise global awareness of Edmonton’s key economic sectors, products, and provide exposure for Edmonton as a tourism destination.

This role is accountable for leading a robust team, charged with securing business event opportunities to Edmonton and its venues. The team includes local, in-house employees as well as off-site representatives in key markets. Change Management will be expected to shape the business events and major events strategy to ensure Edmonton maintains its competitiveness. Explore Edmonton operates the Edmonton Convention Centre and EXPO Centre which enables significant flexibility to drive business now and into the future. This role will also work closely with Edmonton Destination Marketing Hotels (EDMH), an entity that provides event attraction and business development funds, requiring ongoing, measurable room-nights based on their investment.

As part of the Destination Development and Marketing portfolio, the Director, Business Event Sales has a key role in fostering cross collaboration between business units to effectively achieve performance targets. Working closely with the Leadership Team, this person is responsible for the direction of the Business Events unit with a heavy focus on driving desired sales results.

The Director, Business Event Sales is accountable for developing and executing a comprehensive sales strategy and an annual business plan that aligns with Explore Edmonton’s strategic road map and priorities. This role requires extensive relationship building with industry stakeholders within the local, national, and international business event community. The role leads and mentors Business Event employees and manages external contractors. As part of the Explore Edmonton leadership team, the role provides management, coaching, analysis, and solutions to support and advance the goals of the organization. This includes providing strategic advice, strategic planning and decision making, collaboration with other teams, direction and leadership for sales, marketing, communications, and event servicing as it relates to business event attraction and hosting.

In addition to strategic planning, the role requires dedicated financial oversight of the unit, specifically budgeting, forecasting, and tracking economic impact. It requires working with in-house research, finance and business systems to deliver analysis and reporting to key industry stakeholders. The Director, Business Event Sales provides insights to the organizational decision-making process by analyzing economic impact projections and reporting on the reputational gains and legacy of business event hosting. This includes communicating with others in a wide range of internal and external positions to understand and gather qualitative and quantitative information on factors affecting the economic performance, branding opportunities, and social benefits of major business events.

 

Key Accountabilities

The position will include the following responsibilities:

Team Leadership: You are an experienced leader with a sales acumen, second to none. You have a track record of leading teams that have achieved outstanding results. You love mentoring your team, setting goals, and ensuring team growth and success.

  • Set goals, objectives and performance measures. Provides coaching and development opportunities for staff, recruits, hires and trains staff, and takes disciplinary action for direct reports as required.
  • Business travel is a requirement, often regular and will include domestic and international travel. The role will be expected to attend tradeshows, conferences and events, representing the organization.
  • Lead and ignite the sales team – ensure team members’ targets are aligned with the organization’s EI projections and achievable given the economic climate. Create individual performance goals aligned with department and corporate objectives.
  • Coach and mentor team to grow skills and abilities to create opportunities for development and succession.
  • Delivers on personal sales goals while inspiring the team to achieve their results while fostering a supportive, collaborative, and innovative work environment.
  • Act as a thought-leader, coach, and team advisor while modelling Explore Edmonton’s core values.
  • Foster an environment for sharing client knowledge without barriers or withholding insights.
  • Ongoing dedication and response to research & analysis of trends and steering the team accordingly.
  • Oversee and support projects and activities undertaken by the team to support overall unit goals and deliver expected results.

 

Business Development: Initiator who is driven and confident. When it comes to business development, you have the confidence and capability of making change, converting business, developing new ideas, and thinking out of the box.

  • Collaborate with industry partners (i.e., Edmonton Global, EDMH) to identify need periods and develop specific strategies to engage and secure appropriate clients.
  • Actively seek external opportunities with Destination Canada’s Business Events Canada entity and others to develop partnerships and an understanding of industry needs.
  • High-level client negotiations – work with clients and the team on complicated contracts that require balancing the needs of the client, our facilities, the hotel partners and the destination.
  • Partnership strategies – develop strategies to attract events that will provide the greatest economic benefit to the city and facilities. Access and utilize all external business development funds available whether funded by Explore Edmonton or 3rd-party funding channels such as EDMH or Travel AB.
  • Collaborate with industry partners on a regular basis to drive and monitor joint sales initiatives that will address need periods and develop new business opportunities.

 

Strategy & Business Planning: Explore Edmonton has a robust strategic plan, focused on three key areas; Purpose, Mission and Vision. Our purpose is to increase economic impact in Edmonton and this role is fundamental to achieving that goal.

  • Working with the Executive Director, Event and Business Growth, create and lead the ongoing work within the Business Events strategy, including defining priorities, creating implementation plans, setting targets and achieving results.
  • Aligned with corporate direction, execute the business plan by prioritizing opportunities, accessing, and allocating appropriate resources to deliver best return on investment of funds. Leverage internal and external funding channels to ensure all investments provide an ROI and all funds are fully activated.
  • Design and execute initiatives that contribute to the defined visitor economy measures and Economic Impact targets.
  • Provide leadership, expertise, and strategic advice to the Explore Edmonton Senior Leadership Team to ensure sales efforts are maximized.
  • Lead the development and delivery of an integrated business plan to increase Business Event delegate stays. Develop and manage the annual Budget Plan.
  • Develop and manage geo-market and economic sectors plans ensuring delivery of results as outlined in the business plan.

 

Leadership Tasks & Meetings:

  • Act as a sales leader, mastering sales relationships and process.
  • Seek advice, working as a team to deliver results for the whole organization and destination.
  • Continuously connecting the dots by highlighting our vision and keeping all the moving pieces on track.
  • Deliver professional business presentations within Explore Edmonton and represent the organization via stakeholder events including Edmonton Global and EDMH.
  • Ensure outcomes of projects and initiatives align with divisional objectives, targets and expected results.
  • Attend regular meetings and contribute to Explore Edmonton’s leadership team.
  • Contribute to and ensure completion of related sections of Explore Edmonton and EDMH board reports.
  • Prepare monthly forecasting analysis.
  • Manage Explore Edmonton’s third party external funds, and lead additional funding opportunities (i.e., Travel Alberta and EDMH funding). Ensure all funding channels are activated and funds are not left on the table.
  • In collaboration with the Executive Director, Event and Business Growth, represent Explore Edmonton and our destination as the business events expert. Organize and schedule team members when appropriate to attend trade shows. Build relationships with stakeholders to maintain and increase knowledge/trends/insights of the business event industry.

 

Strategic Relationships:

  • Build and maintain positive relationships with key stakeholders including Economic Sector leaders, Legacy Council members, EDMH, City of Edmonton, Destination Canada, Travel Alberta, Edmonton Convention Centre, EXPO Centre, hotel partners, and other business event venues.
  • Strategic Plan presentation to SLT, stakeholders and Board.
  • Maintain a meeting rhythm with stakeholders to foster continued collaboration.
  • Ensure outcomes are consistent with stakeholder expectations.

 

Management of Projects and External Resources:

  • Manage and administer all tasks and contracting related to numerous outsourced resources. (i.e., In-market team members, industry, and support consultants).
  • Contribute to the creation of marketing plans/media campaigns in collaboration with our global marketing team while simultaneously contributing to content development of the Business Events website pages.
  • Liaise extensively with the Edmonton Events/Sports and Culture team and the Event Development team to identify joint practices, plans and processes.
  • Ensure the team maintains required industry memberships and is attending tradeshows and event that deliver measurable ROI.
  • Assist and/or lead special projects as required and perform other duties as assigned.

 

First Year Deliverables / Measures of Success

Success in the first year will be determined by the candidate’s ability to:

  • Focus on securing and turning definite business plans in the pipeline. Work with the team to develop an active sales funnel in order to return to regular room night and revenues by 2024.
  • Through change management, create a driven sales team with sector-specific responsibility.
  • Foster collaboration between business units within Explore Edmonton Corporation to achieve performance and sales targets.
  • Create outstanding trust and relationships with our key business events stakeholders, Edmonton Global and EDMH.
  • Build effective, trusting partnerships with prospective clients while maintaining relationships with current ones that will drive a flourishing economic impact and enhance community benefits.
  • Demonstrate continuous improvement by learning the ins and outs of different industries, with the goal of raising awareness on Edmonton’s key economic sectors and what they can offer on a global level.

 

Candidate Profile

The successful candidate will have the following:

Education:

  • Post-secondary education in Economic Development, Tourism, Business or related. A combination of related education and experience will be considered.

 

Experience:

  • 10 or more years’ combined experience with destination growth, business development (tourism, hospitality and/or venue sector experience preferred), tourism management, economic development, or group, convention sales.
  • Hotel and resort sales experience an asset however must have experience in destination sales, robust financial management and sales leadership, managing teams.
  • Demonstrated track record of delivering a sales strategy and multi-million-dollar economic impact.
  • 5 or more years’ experience in leading multi-level teams, large projects and strategic initiatives.
  • Proven success navigating diverse, multi-stakeholder environments. Preference given to experience across private and public sectors.
  • Significant experience with client management and relationship building.
  • Previous project management experience is an asset.

 

Competencies and Attributes:

  • Ability to critically assess complex, dynamic opportunities and navigate resources to achieve results.
  • Understanding and respect for political and multi-stakeholder environments.
  • Excellent ability to effectively present information to executive management team, public groups, etc.
  • Ability to communicate with stakeholders with varied agendas and buy-in levels, and correlate this feedback into a unified agenda.
  • Comfortable providing coaching, feedback, and guidance to team members.
  • Easily develop and maintain relationships with key stakeholders, industry, and non-traditional partners.
  • Strong leadership of a team with diverse perspectives and responsibilities.
  • Ability to inspire, motivate, and mobilize resources to achieve desired outcomes.
  • Ability to manage multiple projects, meet deadlines, and prioritize on an ongoing basis, seeing a project through to completion, and allocate staff and financial resources accordingly.
  • Experience of budgeting, planning, and human resources management.
  • Optimal problem solving, coaching, and strategic thinking skills.
  • Senior level experience in managing business development opportunities across diverse stakeholder interests.
  • Proficiency with MS Office 365 Suite Applications is an asset (Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Word), and experience in database and/or CRM system management.
  • Knowledge/experience in sales, marketing, and tourism industry innovation.
  • Enthusiastic team player who thrives in a busy multi-task environment and adapts to changing timelines.
  • Excellent knowledge of the city of Edmonton and its unique economic sectors.

How to Apply:

Please send your resume in Word or PDF format to: pies_edmonton@optimumtalent.com. Copy and Paste the following job title and code and place it in the subject line of your email so we can identify the job and confirm receipt of your application:
ARJI-676585 Director, Business Event Sales | Explore Edmonton - AB - Edmonton and Area (OTIAPPLY)

Please note that only those candidates meeting the selection criteria, established by our client, will be contacted further. Although we may not contact you directly for this particular role, all applications will be reviewed as we would like to consider you for future opportunities that may be appropriate. We encourage you to continue to visit our website at optimumtalent.com as our opportunities are updated on a regular basis.