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EVENT SUMMARY: Roaring 20’s: 2020 Celebration and 20th Anniversary Launch


On the 19th of November, 123 enthusiastic PMI NL Chapter members sat in front of their computers or mobile devices to join the 2020 PMI End-of-Year event. Entitled “Roaring 20’s: 2020 Celebration and 20th Anniversary Launch” this event was a celebration of all we have achieved in this pivotal and challenging 2020 year. Plus, it kicked off our PMI NL Chapter 20th Anniversary festivities; founded in 2001 this event marks the beginning of our 20th year in existence.

Unfortunately, due to current COVID-19 restrictions, we were unable to hold a “normal” physical End-of-Year event like we did in previous years. But this did not impede the success of the event.

In the theme of the event, that is of looking back to influence how we look forward, Peter Ryan – Director of Membership & Volunteers - opened the event with an uplifting reflection referencing the words of Cathal Friel, a world leader in the testing of vaccines and antivirals:

“Most people today just need a little bit of optimism and some genuine guidance on a clear pathway out of this difficult period. With a dozen good Covid vaccines coming closer to approval around the world, Covid can ultimately be treated like influenza (with an annual injection) from next summer. After all great crisis’, great opportunities and growth spurts arise, e.g. the golden 15th century came after the Great Plague of the 14th century, the roaring twenties came after the 1918 Spanish flu… and I am certain that next year fantastic opportunities and growth will follow this very difficult pandemic depression. Everybody just needs to support each other and get through this tricky winter.”

With this positive event kickoff, the festivities went onwards. And how better to proceed than with a festive glass of wine and some tasty bites! As a token of gratitude and appreciation, gift boxes were shipped in advance to the first 100 event registrants. Once the presentation started, thank you messages poured in as soon as attendees discovered the delights that were to be found in their box. At the end of the day, who could resist a glass of wine and some tasty finger food from Italy or Spain?

With the drinks and food all set, PMI’s Dutch Chapter President Ger van der Geld walked the audience through the chapter’s 2020 including status, financial figures and the latest updates on the 2021 board elections.

Then it was time to take a look at the top 10 highlights of 2020. Everything from the launch of two new member support programs (Buddy and Mentor Programs) through to the success of Digital Events (including the online PM Fair BeNeLux) and at the pinnacle was the full re-brand of PMI Netherlands with a shiny new website and great content! The list went on….

Following this the results of the highly successful membership survey were presented, by Cris Gliga – Membership Lead for the chapter. 95% of members seek to keep or increase their membership engagement in 2021. Also, this year we received almost 3 times more respondents than last year! Interestingly enough, the most preferred topics for members to discuss was found to be the Agile PMing, PMing in the Business-world, and Innovation. Great ideas for 2021!

At the halfway point, it was time to pour some more wine and proceed with the volunteer recognition. Here Peter took us through the 10+ teams that are fueling our chapters activities, services and improvements. Another major achievement of the chapter with more active volunteers than ever in our history!

This led on to the speech from Anton Zandhuis, who along with Rene Vielvoije and Jan Vermeijs, are the PMI Dutch Chapter Founding Fathers. With Antons unique storytelling ability, he brought the audience alive with the chapters journey, from the shaky start 20 years ago, up to the success it has become today. The 20th Anniversary year was thus officially launched with current President – Ger van der Geld – calling for a toast to the Founding Fathers and the Chapter. They closed with the promise that more events will follow, right up to its crowing moment in 2021.

But it did not end there. This event was about looking back so that we can influence our PMI world moving forward. For this Drake Morse – Director of Professional Development – took the mic and led a fun and futuristic Kahoot quiz. Here he presented a set of tricky questions about the future of project management - through to 2040 - putting the attendee’s knowledge and wit to the test.

With the outlook set, not losing sight of the path already walked, the celebration was brought to a very warm and positive end. Here’s hoping that next time we will see each other in person and make the most out of this year that is about to begin.

Special thanks to all that organized this event. Involving various volunteering teams from Membership and Volunteers, to Events and Comms & Marketing; special thanks goes to Tim O’Toole, Cris Gliga, Hikmet Gunduz, Eduard Hernandez, Helen Meijer and many more.


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