leadership insights forum: The power of the pause

Education and Research Topics

The Leadership Insights Forum offers attendees the opportunity to engage in discussion with their peers and fellow thought leaders during 2 days of intimate education workshops and networking sessions. The Leadership Insights Forum will concentrate on a variety important studies, many of which have not yet been released. You can see these studies below. You can also learn more about our engaging keynote speaker, Deborah Gee, by clicking here

  • U.S. Federal Regulations and Non-Cash Awards
    While the design of non-cash rewards programs involves exciting elements such as exotic travel destinations, fascinating insights into motivation, and thoughtful personalization, many program owners are also aware of the critical role U.S. regulatory and tax requirements play in incentive program design. The IRF’s 2019 U.S. Federal Regulations and Non-Cash Awards Study provides insights into program owners’ understanding of U.S. regulations affecting programs reveals a high rate of change in incentive program design due to a perceived need to make accommodations in order to comply with regulations.
  • Program Owners Voice of the Market 
    2019 Voice of the Market: The Use of Non-Cash Rewards & Recognition is a qualitative study of incentive program owners that explores what they prioritize when designing, implementing, and executing incentive programs. The objective of the study is straightforward: listen to the people designing and operating reward and recognition programs on the front line.
  • IRF Wellness in Meetings Study
    The IRF’s survey of meeting planners reveals health and wellness practices in meetings fall short of the stated company goals. The majority of respondents (64%) said their meetings are only “somewhat healthy.” Of 26 wellness practices presented in the survey, only two are considered standard: smoke-free facilities and water / reduced-calorie drinks. When these modest ratings are compared to the high enthusiasm expressed by planners and the critical focus planners say their companies place on wellness, a disconnect becomes apparent. The IRF Wellness in Meetings Study focuses on interviews and surveys with meeting planners and how their awareness, budget, and offerings impact attendee experience and organizational bottom lines.
  • IRF Top Performer Study
    This study takes Top Performing businesses in the U.S. (those with the highest year over year revenue increases, employee satisfaction and customer satisfaction) and identifies how these businesses think about, design and support their non cash reward and recognition programs differently than average businesses. In 2019, IRF researchers have specifically explored the technology sector, financial sector and manufacturing sector.
  • Award Program Value & Evidence and Establishing the Intangible, Non-Financial Value of Awards Programs
    Establishing the Intangible, Non-Financial Value of Awards Programs looks at how program owners are currently establishing the value of the non-cash reward and recognition programs include both the financial metrics used as well as the non-financial benefits. 
  • The Incentive Travel Industry Index powered by SITE Index, IRF Outlook and FICP
    This collaborative study looks at the outlook and trends for Incentive Travel. Topics include: economic optimism, budgets, award types, program changes, etc.
  • Industry Outlook – Merchandise and Gift Card Market
    This perennial decade-long study looks at the outlook and trends for Gift Cards and Merchandise. Topics covered in the Industry Outlook Study include: economic optimism, budgets, award types, program changes, etc.



A seasoned events and hospitality professional, Deborah Gee is passionate about sharing her love of intentional events, yoga, and a healthy lifestyle with the world. After 20+ years with global leaders Walt Disney World and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts and numerous private-sector boutique event companies, Deborah transitioned into the world of retail and wellness at lululemon.

At lululemon, Deborah gained a newfound appreciation for community engagement, working with a collective, and creating events with a purpose—to elevate the world and leave it a better place than we found it.

In her role as Mindful Events Guru and Experience Designer at lululemon, Deborah reinvents the way guests interact with lululemon stores. Most recently, Deborah and her team opened lululemon’s biggest store ever—a 20,000-square-foot experiential space in Chicago’s Lincoln Park where you can shop, take yoga or meditation session, and grab a cocktail or Beyond Meat burger.

Outside of lululemon, Deborah is a sought-after consultant and Keynote Speaker. As a consultant and speaker, Deborah teaches others how to incorporate meditation, mindfulness, and overall health and wellness into every experience.