BizBash's 10 Conferences That Captivate 2023 is sponsored by Pixis Drones.
The basics: Workforce solutions company ManpowerGroup's annual Circle of Stars business event took place in March 2023 at Hotel Xcaret Arte in Cancun, Mexico. The four-day experience—which hosted the company's North American leadership team, senior leadership team, and top performers—featured nine custom events, all designed to enforce brand values and make each attendee feel celebrated. Events of a Lifetime Productions handled concept, design, planning, and production for the gathering.
Steal-worthy innovations: While there were some business meetings and division-specific gatherings, the majority of the event was focused on celebrating attendees' successes and their impacts on the company. "Because Manpower’s event was named 'Circle of Stars' and celebrated success, we brainstormed approaches that would play into the theme of excellence, success, and being a 'star,'" explained Gillian Marto and Deb Hull of Events of a Lifetime Productions. "Based on the offerings of the property, we crafted and named a series of events to highlight the unique amenities, reinforce Manpower’s brand values like sustainability and giving back, and provide experiences that would celebrate and delight the attendees."
Experiences ranged from an oceanside welcome dinner for executives to nightly branded room drops for attendees to a "Tulum Meets Burning Man"-inspired farewell party on the beach. Another standout? The welcome party, where the team lit and transformed a massive stone pyramid; attendees strolled up the six levels of the pyramid to the "Summit of Success." Authentic Mayan "warriors" were on site, as was a traditional band, and at each level of the pyramid, guests were greeted by different talent, foods, or signature drink experiences.
"Success is a journey—many times, an uphill one," said Marto and Hull. "The journey up Xcaret’s pyramid was a wonderful metaphor—especially reaching the 'Summit of Success,' where the attendees could greet the leadership, have a Champagne toast, and enjoy the dessert bar. Because success is indeed sweet!"
Another highlight was the "Manpower Gives Back" charity event, where attendees worked in teams to craft piñatas that were later filled with school supplies. The "winners" displayed their awards on an Olympic-style platform, and the piñatas—plus optional monetary donations from attendees—were presented to a local charity.
During the event's gala, meanwhile, all attendees converged on the lawn to watch a custom drone show choreographed to music. "'Starry Starry Night' was the theme for the gala because it was a night focused on celebrating Manpower’s stars," said Marto and Hull. "It was especially fitting to look into the night sky at the tiny drone 'stars' putting each division’s logo up to sparkle in the sky."
The week culminated with the all-white Tulum-inspired event. Manpower logos were projected onto oceanfront caves, and guests could enjoy swings situated over the water along with teepees and lounge areas around the shore. Disco-head performers and LED light twirlers—outfitted with LEDs that featured the Manpower logo—entertained the crowd.
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Pixis Drones is a market-leading drone light show company built with experiential agency DNA and a splash of Hollywood moxie. While the company is known for the drone light shows it did for Super Bowl LVI, the 2022 NBA Draft, and the 2023 NFL Draft, it has delivered shows for noteworthy B2B and B2C brands across various industries and markets.