“Ladies and gentlemen, the recession has left the building.”

Posted November 25, 2010

At the risk of sounding insensitive to those people still out of work and/or struggling to keep their businesses afloat, the event industry is clearly no longer in recession.  (I just knocked my wooden desk for all you superstitious folks who think I just jinxed it). Everyone is crazy-busy right now.  And I mean everyone.  […]

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The Un-Conference: Participant-Driven Agenda + Mashup Networking = Relationship Building on Steroids

Posted November 15, 2010

“What’s this conference about again?” my wife asks me, as I pack my suitcase getting ready to head to Event Camp East Coast (ECEC). “I don’t know.” “Well, what are the topics that’ll be covered?” “I don’t know.” “Who are the speakers?” “I don’t know”. “Okaaaaay.  Can you at least tell me what format it […]

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“Beware the Daring of A Cautious Man”: The danger of a half-hearted RFP response.

Posted November 8, 2010

You’re sitting at your desk staring at an RFP you just received for a nice big job.  It’s big bucks if you get it, and a high profile client to boot.  The kind of event you sit around hoping lands on your desk. You’re so excited that after scanning the RFP you call the client […]

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Let the Big Dog Eat. (What golf can teach business owners about selling.)

Posted October 26, 2010

I’m sitting in the conference room of a mid-sized event company talking to the owner.  He’s lamenting that he can’t seem to get his company ‘to the next level’ and wants my help.  When I press him, he seems to think he knows what’s holding him back. “We need more sales,” he says.  “I need […]

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How to Land A Big Client . . . NOT.

Posted October 6, 2010

Dear Howard, I’ve been trying to get my foot in the door with a big corporate client who does a ton of major events, including many big product launches, which are right up our alley.  I’ve been calling on them for almost two years, and have even been in to pitch them in person.  Finally […]

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You’re Only As Happy As Your Least Happy Client. (Solution: A happy client is not the same as a successful event.)

Posted September 27, 2010

That’s my personal modification of a brilliant quote by Joe Paterno, the legendary Penn State football coach, who said, “You’re only as happy as your least happy child.”  And it’s equally brilliant when applied to working with clients. The least happy client demands the most attention, pulling your time away from other clients, and generally […]

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The Era of the Perma-Lancer. [Or, Temporary Freelancers Are Here to Stay.]

Posted September 19, 2010

. . . This has truly created a new paradigm for growing an event agency, where firms are modeling their behavior after movie productions: for each project a dedicated team is assembled, after which they go their own way. Only the key principals remain. Of course you can still build your agency the old fashioned way, by growing a bigger and bigger team. But after the body blow the economy delivered to most business owners two years ago, this new model has a lot of appeal by enabling firms to expand as much as they need to, while keeping their fixed costs low.

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Vote Early & Vote Often (for me): EventProfs Blog Contest

Posted September 1, 2010

So I’ve been nominated for an event industry blog and I need your vote.  My blog is one of 7 up for best “Thought Provoking Blog” in the eventprofs blog competition.  I know what you’re thinking, and there was no category for “Most Irreverent & Sarcastic Blog”.  Believe me, I checked. CLICK HERE TO VOTE, […]

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The E-Myth: Why Most Small Businesses Fail, & What You Can Do About It

Posted August 25, 2010

Tell me if this story sounds familiar. My friend Tom is a gifted carpenter.  After working for 15 years as the lead project manager for a contractor who built & renovated houses, he decided to go out on his own.  He’d learned everything there was to learn about a building site and managing a construction […]

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My new iphone app: Super Planner

Posted August 13, 2010

I feel like a proud father who just gave birth to a new child.  Actually I feel more like the mother, because the father doesn’t do anything in childbirth other than pass out cigars.  The mother, on the other hand, carries and nurtures the developing baby and goes through excruciating pain to deliver it to […]

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If I Had A Million Dollars (for your business) . . .

Posted August 4, 2010

So goes the song by Barenaked Ladies, but I’ve also found it’s a great tool to use in diagnosing an event company, or any small business for that matter.  Here’s how it works. ABC event company says to me, “We’re doing ok, but we can’t seem to get over this hump.  How do we get […]

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Exit Stage Right

Posted July 22, 2010

Marjory Tivlin is furious.  She is livid that she did not get to speak on stage during the event, and it’s all your fault.  I’m the Director of Public Affairs, the Mayor’s right hand, she says, and it was embarrassing that I came all the way here to read a congratulatory letter and you wouldn’t […]

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False environmentalism, & other hotel pet peeves

Posted July 12, 2010

Most people who plan events for a living do a fair amount of traveling.  As I write this, I am sitting in my hotel room reflecting on a number of things that seem to annoy me in virtually every hotel I’ve stayed in.   Allow me to share them with you, and if they annoy you […]

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Speech at the Big Apple Awards: 4 Trends Driving Our Industry

Posted July 3, 2010

NOTE: It was my honor to be inducted as President of the ISES NY Metro Chapter at our Big Apple Awards on June 29th in NYC, on a night when we honored 4 Hall of Legends (Marcy Blum, Walter Rauscher, Debra Roth, and Francis Tedesco), and handed out 20 event awards.  I’ve been asked to […]

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Industry Awards: The good, the Bad, and the Spin

Posted June 18, 2010

And the winner is . . . Not you if you haven’t entered anything.  No thanking the Academy, no trophy to carry around at the post-awards show reception to feel like a big shot, no sparkling hardware to show off in your office or reception area. And, most importantly, nothing to market yourself or your […]

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