NIGP: The Institute for Public Procurement

NIGP launches innovative and immersive Leadership Summit for senior public procurement professionals to rave attendee reviews

“The conference could not have gone off better and the attendees were extremely pleased with the experience and results. Partnering with Event Garde provided me the opportunity to deliver an exceptional learning experience to our members.”

- Todd Slater, Ph.D., Chief Content Officer

Benefit Summary

  • Facilitated weekly strategy discussions and provided overall project management guidance during the short planning window for this brand-new event.
  • Collaborated with NIGP to set clear event goals that were then used to create a customized curriculum with distinct educational tracks and unique session formats.
  • Developed and formatted an action plan template designed to help attendees record and later apply program takeaways post-event.
  • Provided feedback on NIGP's communication and marketing plan, offering valuable insights and recommendations to enhance effectiveness and drive registrations.
  • Provided comprehensive training and preparation for facilitators, equipping them with the necessary skills and confidence to lead assigned sessions.



In the wake of the pandemic's impact, compounded by concerns over hotel attrition and lost attendee revenue, NIGP found itself confronted with the looming threat of a significant financial penalty, potentially reaching six figures, due to the necessity of canceling an in-person conference slated for fall 2021. Concurrently, the departure of a vital member from the learning team underscored the organization's need to adapt and innovate.

With a commitment to serving its senior-level members more effectively, NIGP recognized the imperative to devise a new learning and networking experience. However, the persistence of various COVID restrictions, notably social distancing measures, further complicated the planning process. Amidst these challenges, NIGP sought innovative solutions and a strategic partnership to navigate the evolving landscape and deliver value to its members while mitigating potential financial risks.


Acknowledging the need for creative thinking and experienced learning/meeting professionals amid COVID restrictions, NIGP engaged Event Garde to co-create an entirely new program, ensuring senior procurement leaders received enriching learning and networking opportunities during an important time of transition and uncertainty. This new three-day event was imagined around five key themes: diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), workforce development, finance and strategic planning, supplier collaboration, and innovation and sustainability.

This initiative aimed to build upon the organization’s existing portfolio of quality in-person and virtual meetings, providing a dynamic platform for an otherwise underserved segment of the association’s membership – those more experienced professionals who benefit most from an immersive, multi-day experience centered around knowledge exchange, professional growth, and community development.

Ultimately, deliverables included a detailed event summary, including background, event structure, audience, anticipated experience, and key themes; curriculum at a glance, complete with daily focus, keynote topics, networking sessions, learning labs, and crucial conversations; detailed facilitator guides for each session, including timing, talking points, and recommended supplies; and a formatted learning journal, including reflection, note taking, and action plan opportunities.


NIGP successfully launched its first-ever Leadership Summit over three days in September 2021. Summit attendees provided the following feedback:

  • 98% of respondents liked the overall event format.
  • 94% of respondents enjoyed the new keynote structure.
  • 94% of respondents stated that event content will help them achieve their goals.
  • 93% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that the event met their expectations.
  • 91% of respondents recommended that the Summit be part of NIGP’s event mix going forward.

Additionally, the NIGP staff team found the working relationship with Event Garde to be a very positive experience. NIGP was up against tight timelines and a structure that needed significant work before it was ready for release. Together, key team members from both NIGP and Event Garde worked well together, communications were clear, deliverables were met as expected, and no team challenges or conflicts got in the way.