Name: Jay Martens
Position title: Event Director
Company name: Talk2 Media & Events
When and why did you join the industry?
I joined the industry at 19 years old after accepting a tour leader position for a Belgian Tour operator – I worked in South East Asia, mainly across Thailand, Myanmar and Vietnam.
At 22, I travelled to London and landed in the world of trade shows and have never looked back.
What do you like most about your job?
That it doesn’t feel like a job. When Talk2 Media & Events came calling to work on AIME, it was an easy yes. The vision set out for the event is exciting and offers the opportunity to create the platform that will lead the Asia Pacific Business Event community to new heights.
What’s one of the biggest achievements of your career so far?
Learning from failure. Sometimes when you put everything in and think you will succeed tremendously, only to take a huge hit – which can be very difficult to deal with. Learning to stand up again and turn failure into a lesson, is something I’m most proud of.
What’s the best advice ever given to you and who gave it?
When I was waiting at an airport an old retired Thai man told me “water that runs under a bridge never comes back”. We started talking and he asked me what I was doing in Thailand – in our conversation he shared some amazing life insights. This quote has always stuck with me and I continue to reinterpret it to this day.
Who do you admire and see as a role model in the industry?
I don’t have one hero but many. Entrepreneurs that challenge the status quo and push the line further so that the rest of us can benefit; they are some of my heroes.
What can people expect from your company and what sets it apart from the rest? I think that what sets Talk2 Media & Events apart from other companies is how we stay hungry. Doing a great job always leads to “can we do better and how?” Our philosophy is focused on people and how what we do enhances their future.
What destinations are on your travel bucket list?
This is always a difficult question to answer as there’s so much to see and experience. To name a few,I’d love to travel to Marrakesh and explore the Souks and the Riads, experience Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, watch the sunset at Victoria Falls and cruise the Congo River.
What’s a memorable travel experience you’ve had (good or bad)?
One memorable moment was sitting atop a temple in Bagan, Myanmar, watching the sun rise, bringing life back to over 2000 temples. An incredible experience that I’m so grateful to have seen.
What are three things you always take with you when travelling?
I used to take a camera, a great book and some music with me – but now smartphones can do all of that, so it’s all morphed into one. Safe to say my carry-on in now a lot smaller!
Name someone famous you’d like to travel with and a destination you’d like to go with them.
I am not sure if he is famous yet, but he will be. My good friend Jose Mariano from Zero to Infinity in Barcelona (The Bloon Project).
He’s creating an amazing experience where you can travel to space in a balloon and are able to look down and see the curvature of our planet. He’s extremely close to achieving his goal and it will be an unmissable experience.
What direction do you see the industry heading in over the next five to ten years?
I think the advancement of technology has, and is still, changing the game for the business industry. Technology has created the most informed consumer ever. Therefore, it’s the role of the industry to continue to elevate our offering and look for new ways to add value to their overall experience. That being said, I think technology will always have its limitations when it comes to real-world human interaction.
What can people from the Travel industry expect for AIME 2019?
The Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Event 2019, will focus on delivering three key elements that will lead the industry to new horizons.
- More business: our focus is to deliver better and measurable outcomes to the investment made by the AIME community, both financially and in a shorter period of time.
- More knowledge: we are transforming the Monday event as a platform for sharing and acquiring knowledge for all. We have partnered with several organisations – PCMA, ICCA, MEA – to offer an incredible program for buyers, exhibitors and media attending AIME 2019.
- More networking: AIME is at the heart of the Asia Pacific Business Event community. We are working hard to deliver experiences through our events (including the design and set-up) to reflect the diversity of the region but also create new opportunities for all.
There is much more being prepared behind the scenes and we are excited to welcome the industry in Melbourne next February; because AIME is when Asia Pacific meets.