Meaghan Carfrey, 33, works in San Diego, California, as director of strategic account management at Cadence Meetings + Incentives. As a 2019 40 Under 40 honoree, Carfrey discusses her passion for the events industry.
What I do:
I interact daily with key clients, planning their large meetings, brainstorming roadmaps for the future success of their account, strategically reviewing upcoming programs, expanding reach into organizations to create multiple touch points, rolling out strategic meeting management programs and overseeing the operations of existing SMM accounts.
How I got here:
I started my career with Starwood Hotels San Diego Metro Market, representing four hotels as a sales manager in the corporate and pharmaceutical markets. Eight years later, when the opportunity presented itself to “go to the other side,” I joined Cadence as a program manager responsible for the planning and execution of meeting and Incentives. After three successful years planning, I became an account executive dedicated to client relationships and account retention and growth. I most recently have taken on the role of director of strategic account management to elevate our clients dedicated support for all their managed travel Cadence offers.
Greatest career accomplishments:
At Cadence, I had a client that sold his company and wanted to give his employees who had been there from the beginning a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Paris. Their only request: “Give them something they can’t do on their own.” With that said, and a healthy budget, I planned a trip that gave those 34 attendees just that! The welcome night started off with attendees riding via private luxury cars to The Louvre Museum where the Museum was closed just for them for a tour and dinner. Over the course of the week they had a VIP dinner at Le Jules Verne, went on epic day excursions to Champagne and Normandy, had a VIP experience at the Roland Garros French Open and attended an AC/DC concert in style.
Since becoming an account manager in 2017, I have successfully increased my key account revenue by more than 30 percent year-over-year in each account. With the finalization of an SMMP to be concluded in 2019, I am forecasted to raise revenue by more than 140 percent year-over-year.
Specific improvements I’ve made:
The need for an account manager became apparent to help bridge the gap between our sales and operations team and grow accounts to new levels. I was promoted to this position to elevate the key clients I represented, while continuing to operate their events, learn their hot buttons and foster relationships. This deployment was incredibly successful for both Cadence and our clients. To support the success of all parties I created and implemented standard operating procedures to elevate our day-to-day operations. These SOP’s are instrumental in the success of our internal team processes, technology platforms and client facing documents.
I also implemented a strategic meeting management platform and hired an in-house meeting manager to sit in our client’s office. This platform is helping drive process automation, data curation and insightful reporting on our clients spend while deepening our relationships daily.
What I am working on now:
I’m excited to start the San Diego State University Hospitality and Tourism Master’s Program in Fall 2019.
What I do outside of work:
I’m a live music junkie, enjoy hiking and Pilates and sharing a wonderful meal with great company in one of San Diego’s new, great restaurants.