© NürnbergMesse GmbH

12 June 2018

Leadership in Action: From the personal touch, to medical meetings and famous “kicks”… A Conversation with NürnbergMesse’s Sabina Linke

Sabina Linke is the Head of International Marketing & Acquisition at the NürnbergMesse GmbH, and VP of Membership for the MPI Germany Chapter. She is also a long-time member of the meeting industry, people person and lover of all things Nuremberg ... including sports and famous sportwear brands. Get to know her a little better here as the GCB talks about leadership with her.

Sabina Linke, © NürnbergMesse GmbH

Sabina you have been in the meetings and conference business for a long time now. What is the secret to success?

When I started, I was not fully aware of how essential it is to do business with a truly personal touch. As my career developed I realized more and more that all business is personal. It's about connecting with and helping each other in small and big ways - person-to-person. So my approach is to bring a personal touch to whoever I am working with, or want to work with. The "secret" seems really simple, yet takes commitment and consistency. Building partnerships by bringing extra attention to what you do. Being reliable and persistent! This really makes all the difference I think and it's what our team works hard on every day - to make our clients feel good, and valued and successful.

What trend are you seeing in the meetings industry right now that really excites you?

I'm very excited about all the conversations around women in our industry right now. She Means Business at IMEX in Frankfurt is a specific example, of course, but I'm also feeling a general energy around this with colleagues and clients. I think women are taking on a new level of self-consciousness professionally, and feeling more encouraged to speak up about what they want in their careers. Women are increasingly realizing their knack for empathy and diplomacy can add so much to business. We also want to find more ways to bond professionally with other women. I think this is great and only adds to the good work in our industry and our relationships with everyone-men and women.

What advice would you give to younger people just starting their meetings career?

Find a mentor and have a dynamic relationship with them. Listen to their insights ... especially to what you don't want to hear. Both negative and the positive feedback is important to improve your skills and advance as a professional. The second piece is that interesting opportunities arise across, and well beyond, our industry so nurture relationships with an expanded group of people.

You are the MPI German Chapter VP of Membership right now. What are your goals in this role?

One of our goals as a Board, and my focus, is to grow the number of German MPI members to be more representative of Germany's leadership position in the meetings market. I think it's a shame that in the largest professional network in our industry, the Germany chapter is one of the smallest in Europe. As the number one meetings destination in Europe and number two globally, it makes sense for us to take more part in the conversations of the global MPI community. We also want to make sure our meeting professionals at all levels can come together in new ways under the MPI banner to share ideas, learn and network.

Nuremberg has a lot going on in Medical Meetings. Tell us a bit about that expertise hub.

The Metropolitan Region of Nuremberg and its Medical Valley is Germany's Medical Technology Hub with over €100 million invested in the sector in just the last 5 years alone. 850 thousand patients are treated here annually, 500 healthcare companies including Siemens & Novartis call Nuremberg home. This makes it a draw for medical meetings and conferences as delegates can connect and learn from local experts as speakers and through unique site visits and tours. My organization, the NürnbergMesse is also partnering with UBM, the world's second biggest organizer of business-to-business shows and conferences to combine their MedTec show and our MT Connect event. The result is a new show called MedtecLIVE in 2019 in Nuremberg which will be one of leading events in HealthCare. We also host a reoccurring meeting in Nuremberg with area medical universities and clinics to foster thought leadership, called the Medical Dinner.

I heard there was a social media storm recently around a famous meeting goer in Nuremberg?

Ah that's a fun one to end on. Yes it was Selena Gomez who has the most Instagram followers on the planet. You may not realize it but two of the world's biggest sportwear and sneaker brands Adidas and Puma are based in and around Nuremberg so we do a lot with sport conferences and events here. Selena has designed a shoe with Puma -- the Phenom Lux -- where a portion of the proceeds will go towards Lupus research and she was meeting at Puma right outside Nuremberg for a marketing meeting. This caused quite a stir when she was out walking around town getting something to eat.

For more information on the Messe and meeting in Nuremberg you can reach the NürnbergConvention team at +49 911 8606 - 8303 or info@nuernberg-convention.de