Janice Cardinale
Founder & Chief Idea Hunter
The Idea Hunter

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We recently had the opportunity to catch up with industry icon Janice Cardinale  while she took a break from hunting, to chat ideas for 2020!  Janice is the Chief Idea Hunter and founded the company in 2003..  She built a successful business by leading a team of trend-setting intrapreneurs who are on a mission to create human connections and experiences in the meeting and event industry.

The passionate, professional and dedicated team of huntresses at The Idea Hunter take risks to deliver stellar results, creating bespoke experiences that disrupt the status quo and engage audiences through immersing them in the moment.

In constant pursuit of the next big idea, the team is driven by the idea that “We Don’t Do Ordinary; and we don’t think you should either. We Don’t Follow Trends; we create them.”

PLANNERS ARE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR WHAT’S NEW AND HASN’T BEEN DONE BEFORE. HOW DO YOU KEEP YOUR IDEAS FRESH AND AHEAD OF THE CURVE?Toronto is a world-class city and we pride ourselves on fusing together customized acts and engaging ideas while mentoring young urban talent for a new generation of event professionals.  We are the umbrella for elite ideas & performers which is why our corporate clients choose us. Culture, diversity and inclusion have always been our mantra.

IDEA HUNTER LIKES TO SAY THAT YOU ‘DON’T DO ORDINARY’. WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY THAT? WHAT SETS THE IDEA HUNTER APART FROM A TRADITIONAL EVENT AGENCY?
We ideate, innovate and customize most ideas that we execute. We care about our vendors as much as we care about our clients.  We show up at our events to manage our services and our team of huntresses are dedicated, passionate and knowledgeable about what is required on-site and how to manage expectations.

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Janice Cardinale graced the cover of The Meeting Professional Magazine earlier this year.

AS WE HEAD INTO 2020 AND A NEW DECADE AHEAD, WHERE DO YOU SEE THE INDUSTRY HEADING?
Great question!  I personally feel that you can no longer get away with selling a menu of ideas so to speak.  A new generation of event professionals expect more attention paid to the why statement.  Are the ideas being presented acceptable, inclusive, diverse and do they feed the culture of the event or do they match up with the purpose of the event? Are the ideas mindful, thoughtful and are they helping to make a difference in the attendee experience.

The fast pace of technology allows us to engage new ideas that are digitally driven.  As an example, we are the first to have digital photo activations that incorporate Artificial Intelligence (AI).  We are speaking to all of our clients about health and well-being and what that can look like at their events. Many of the services we sell will change over the next decade and we must prepare ourselves for less human connection and more automated ie: robot-driven experiences.

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Just like the computer which many said would never replace how we do business, in my research into trends leading up to 2050, I see a very different world where humans are replaced by technology and there will be less human engagement.  Whether one wants to believe it or not, I see this happening at the World Expo in Dubai next year and the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo amongst many other ideas that are out there on the internet.  My attitude about all of it is to embrace the change and be ahead of the curve.  That is how we stay relevant at The Idea Hunter and in the minds of corporate clients around the globe.  We don’t follow, we lead.

CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT A RECENT PROJECT THAT YOUR TEAM WORKED ON THAT YOU’RE REALLY PROUD OF AND WHY?
That’s a tough question because we are blessed to have been a part of so many incredible events in so many different industries across North America, that it is hard to choose one.  Personally, I love the events that we can give back to the community as this is always top of mind.  It is not that these are the events that have extraordinary things, but they feel good in my heart.  An example of this is an event coming up on November 21st for Habitat for Humanity’s 20th anniversary.  I am proud to be able to say that we landed our very first event in Singapore this week and can add that to our many opportunities throughout the business. I am also very proud of my team and the ideas that they create for their clients. I am truly proud of all of it!

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR THE NEXT GENERATION OF MEETING PLANNERS OR THOSE STARTING OUT IN THE INDUSTRY?
Find a mentor, learn from experiences, volunteer for an association, have someone check your resume to ensure it lines up with the expectations our event professionals look for.  Take an accredited course in events such as CMP, CMM, or others that exist beyond the colleges and Universities.

WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO KEEP LOOKING FOR THE NEXT GREAT IDEA?
Another great question!  Everything motivates me.  This post motivates me.  I am an entrepreneur and a leader within the event industry in Canada.  I volunteer, I get involved in partnering with associations and conferences that need new ideas.  I love to speak on trends and write editorials on the various event-related subject matter.  I am truly motivated by my team of huntresses, our clients, our vendors and have always been passionate about the hunt.

For more information and to get the team on the hunt for you visit theideahunter.ca or theideahunter.ca or info@theideahunter.ca

THE IDEA HUNTER’S PREDICTION FOR COLOUR PANTONE OF THE YEAR: NEO MINT

The Chief Idea Hunter predicts that neo mint will reign for 2020, followed by cantaloupe, honey yellow and dusk blue.  Let’s see if she is right?

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