Marina Parra-Flechsig was recently named President of the SITE Germany Chapter. She is Managing Director/Owner of Weichlein Tours + Incentives based in Munich, one of the market leaders in Germany covering main cities, such as Berlin, Frankfurt, Cologne, Hamburg and Stuttgart.
SITE Germany is celebrating its 25th Anniversary, 10 December 2015, with a “Christmastime Munich” dinner, sponsored by Munich Convention Bureau and Weichlin Tours + Incentives, followed by a post-tour on 11 December to Ingolstadt Village, sponsored by Value Retail. To learn more and to register go to SITE Germany 25th Anniversary.
SITE: What/who motivated you to assume a SITE chapter leader position?
Marina: I have been involved with SITE since 1997 and was encouraged to volunteer as SITE Germany Chapter President by Past-President, Dr. Patrick Patridge. I am fully convinced of the value of being a member of such an important community. SITE is the most important association in the global MICE segment. I believe in the continuous education and networking possibilities that our association provides, as well as the return on investment. In my case this has been proven on numerous occasions. SITE Germany chapter has been running on a low flame over the past couple of years and it definitely has the potential of becoming a very strong chapter once again, as it was in its 1990s heyday. There are many valuable members (active and future) whom I expect to bring actively on board.
SITE: When recruiting new members what do you tell them are the greatest personal and professional benefits of being a member of SITE, specifically, SITE Germany?
Marina: SITE is a large family for me. Many hosted buyers are SITE members and many DMC members also have outgoing departments. There is a lot of cross-selling taking place between members. I have received many pieces of business from SITE members from all around the world. Just mentioning that I am a SITE member gives clients a sense of security as they trust in the ethics and professionalism for which SITE is recognized worldwide. Interaction with different cultures, exchange of knowledge, business development and industry recognition via SITE awards makes the benefits complete.
SITE: What events and activities is the chapter planning in 2016 to engage current and prospective members in 2016?
Marina: I am fortunate to be able to count on the support of two experts in the field - SITE Germany past-presidents Heike Mahmoud, CMP of visitBerlin - Berlin Convention Office and Dr. Patrick Patridge of Tourism Marketing & PR. We are mainly working on engaging active and potential members at regular chapter events, such as the popular pre-ITB Berlin get-together for SITE members & friends attending or exhibiting at ITB Berlin, as well as during SITE Nite Europe and IMEX Frankfurt. However, it is important that we communicate regularly and that we meet in person - not only regionally, but also at events that involve the entire country. For IMEX Frankfurt we are developing an exciting new project that incorporates hosted buyers and suppliers under the same roof as part of the IMEX hosted buyer lounge. More details to follow soon!