Friday, October 2, 2009

Face the Facts!

Sitting where I do today in this age of digitized transactions and impersonal exchanges that while speedy lack the warm-fuzzy (personal) or the gratification of a negotiation completed (business), I am regularly engaged in reinforcing something that is anything but old fashioned: face to face interaction.

I feel like Andy Rooney in writing this, but can you imagine choosing a doctor, deciding on a caregiver for a loved one, choosing a money manager, firming up a business relationship - or any number of significant commitments - without first meeting the person with whom you are seriously associating?

While the pace of change has gradually increased, this past year it shoved its way in and created a new reality. As a world community, we were pushed harder this year to function in new ways and adopt new practices, primarily because of the economy and the internet. While intense and unfamiliar, ultimately change is good. But, I don’t think progress requires “throwing away the baby with the bathwater”. As it relates to doing business, there simply is no substitute for looking a person in the eye to talk and explore ideas and opportunities together. How else can you authentically develop trust, confidence and a general comfort level?

At their most fundamental, tradeshows, conferences and other events provide that opportunity.
I know I have a vested interest in reinforcing this format – so maybe you think I’m biased - but I believe this to my core. There are many opportunities to build new and profitable relationships, along with what I call “high touch schmoozing” that is integral to keep current relationships fresh that can’t be replicated outside this format.

May seems a long time away, but not at NSS headquarters! We are in the thick of renewing exhibitors, developing exciting partnerships, orchestrating innovative promotions, welcoming new companies planning their debut on the exhibit floor, as well as welcoming back exhibitors that took last year off.

I hope everyone that reads my blog this week buys into this reality: what you make and what you sell is core to our social culture and may it long live! So, if you’re in this business then doing business face to face at the 2010 National Stationery Show truly is anything but old fashioned.


1 comment:

  1. I completely agree - nothing replaces face to face interaction.