Special Industry Groups (SIGS)
What is a SIG?
A SIG is a program where shopping center professionals of like disciplines meet to discuss and exchange insights and ideas to keep informed about current industry developments.
SIGs are interactive and participatory and are intended for sharing best practices. SIGs also provide an excellent opportunity to network with colleagues.
How many different SIGs are there?
How is a SIG organized?
Typically SIGs are held in conjunction with another ICSC event, i.e., an Idea Exchange or Regional Conference; however a SIG can also be a free standing event.
Each committee helps to determine:
- Where SIGs should be held/scheduled
- What SIG formats should be used
- Who should facilitate each SIG
- Identify current industry issues
If a SIG is held in conjunction with an Idea Exchange or Regional Conference, the Program Planning Committee should determine the timing of SIGs on the program, as well as which SIGs will be most popular/ appropriate in a given geographic area. (SIGs are most successful when held before an opening reception or opening luncheon).
Each program planning committee can designate a representative to work on SIGs with the ICSC Project Manager or Lorraine Mazza, Vice President, responsible for SIGS. Alternatively ICSC Vice President, Lorraine Mazza can organize the SIGs.
In either case, Facilitators need to be secured for each SIG and topics determined.
What is the Format for a SIG?
SIGs can be held in a variety of formats which include:
- TOWN HALL MEETINGS
- Open Forum for discussion where there are one or two facilitators asking pre-planned questions to the audience.
- (Sometimes a panel of experts are assembled to help conversation flowing and to add their viewpoint).
- ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSIONS
- The group is broken into roundtables. There is a designated facilitator for each table who is selected in advance.
- Sometimes there are specific topics for each roundtable. Other times each table has the same talking points.
- Either way, 15 minutes before the conclusion of the SIG each roundtable facilitator reports on the highlights discussed by the group.
- HOLLOW SQUARE DISCUSSION GROUP
- A list of talking points are handed out and a facilitator keeps discussion flowing.
- PANEL WITH DISCUSSION
- This is a “talk show” format where panels of industry experts are assembled to be part of the open discussion.
- The facilitator(s) then roam the audience taking questions or comments. Often the format is contingent upon the size of the group.
- Depending upon the time of day a SIG is offered it can also include breakfast, lunch or reception with time allocated for networking.
- Regardless of the format, SIGs must be interactive, informative and participatory. They are not intended to be a lecture or formal presentation.
Are there fees to attend a SIG?
- If SIGs are held in conjunction with another ICSC event-any attendee registered for that event, Regional Conference or IDEX are able to attend a SIG at no additional cost.
- If someone is not registered for the event there is a fee associated with the SIG. Fees vary upon function and region.
- There are charges for all the SIGs held as Free Standing Events.
How Do I Become Involved With SIGs?
There are several ways to get involved. These included:
- Serving on a local SIG Committee
- Acting as a SIG facilitator
- Being a sponsor for a SIG
To become involved in any capacity simply complete the SIG Volunteer Participation form which can be found on the ICSC website. You will then be contacted to determine the best way for you to participate.
Why Should I Participate in SIGs?
SIGs provide a unique opportunity to be on the pulse of the most current and up to date information in the industry. SIGs give you an advantage over others by being connected to a Global Network of Industry Professionals you can use as a resource to share ideas with and enhance your business endeavors.
- SIG’s are part of a Global initiative to provide ICSC members the opportunity to meet at ICSC events to exchange insight, ideas and keep informed about current developments in the industry.
- By participating in the SIGs you help create small professional networks within the broader ICSC Global Membership.
- SIGs provide a resource for participants to share information & best practices.
- SIGs provide a forum for education and networking within the ICSC structure.
- SIGs are held at various ICSC Regional Meetings and Idea Exchanges.
- SIGs are planned in conjunction with ICSC volunteers (State and Divisional officials), and local Program Planning Committees.
- SIGs are marketed in ICSC’s program brochures with other organizations where appropriate and by email blasts.