Hi, I'm Don Neal and welcome to what I hope you'll find is a fresh approach to how you think about your business, your job and, occasionally, your life. I Iook forward to hearing your questions, ideas and feedback.
When I sit in a chair, I take for granted it will support me. When I turn on the faucet, I take for granted the water is clean and I won’t get sick if I drink it. And even when I fly, I take it for granted that I’ll land safely.
Is your organization a nonprofit? If so, that means you have a mission to serve a constituency, educate them, advocate for them and provide opportunities for connections, community and commerce. However, being a nonprofit doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t earn a profit.
Customer (and member) loyalty is the holy grail of a successful organization; it’s the measure of success in every relationship—professional or personal.
The economic benefit of customer loyalty is measured by lifetime value (LTV), which is the net present economic contribution of a customer over the number of years they are with you. For example, Cadillac learned that the LTV of an owner was over $1 million—that’s the value of cars purchased, service, parts and referrals. Not bad.
We all know that the federal, state and local regulatory apparatus just isn’t able to keep up with the rate of change occurring within and around the industries they are charged to regulate.
So for any organization that has an annual meeting, industry conference, or trade show there is often an untapped opportunity to help improve the understanding, insight and awareness of key issues, technology and changes that will help regulators better do their jobs. It’s also most likely in favor of those you represent.
Like many of you, I regularly travel from one end of our country to the other. And on this Independence Day, I think about how many small towns, cities and neighborhoods I have flown over that are celebrating our nation’s liberation from England and commemorating our Declaration of Independence 241 years ago.
Today, I’m going to tune out the noise, the media feuds, the debate, the divisiveness and the polarization, and remember that we are one nation, a nation that still holds the promise of unity through our Constitution, our laws, our freedoms and our optimism. Today is a day to bond over our similarities, instead of fracture along our differences.
Today, I’m going to a parade with fire trucks, antique cars, kids on bikes, home-made floats, high school marching bands and cars driven by local politicians.
Those of us watching along the parade route will hold flags passed out by the local community leaders, which we will wave proudly. Together, we will salute our country to honor our forefathers and in tribute to our youth, who are getting more committed to bettering our world with each generation.
I will remember what a privilege it is to live in the United States and what is possible if we never lose sight of what it took to get to this place in history. I will be grateful for the continued peace, the promise of prosperity and the basic rights we have as citizens of what I still believe is a country defined as a “shining city upon a hill.”
So, let’s all say hi to a stranger, call a friend or family member who voted for the other candidate and make amends, maybe read the Constitution, enjoy the fireworks, and mostly just celebrate America and think about what we can all do tomorrow, on July 5th, to help us be the country that lives up to the ideals, promise and possibilities that inspire us to be the best version of ourselves.
Wishing you a meaningful and proud Independence Day.
For anyone who is interested in watching disruption occur right before their very eyes and if your organization has an event that is focused on serving a specific industry, it’s time to pay attention.
The entrepreneurs who disrupted the financial services event marketplace AND the retail event space are now disrupting the healthcare event landscape.
First, a quick step back in time. After launching and then, five years later, selling Money20/20 for $100 million, the founders of this new event launched Shoptalk, a new event that blew up the status quo for retail event organizers.
Does your organization host an event, a conference, a trade show, an annual meeting or a scientific symposium?
If it does, who is the author, the voice, the one person who is the spirit, inspiration and embodiment of the event?
Great events are like great performances, great books, great movies, great stories. And every great story has a single voice, an author. Star Wars had George Lucas, TED had Richard Saul Wurman, Harry Potter had J.K. Rowling, and the World Economic Forum in Davos had Klaus Martin Schwab.
H ow does this quote from the Roman poet Horace relate to us today? It may mean that during these times of comfort for many—a peaceful homeland, a rising stock market, record-low unemployment and an overall sense of national prosperity—the true genius of our time has yet to be revealed.
I’m writing this post in New Orleans and was thinking, is there anyplace in this city that doesn’t sell beignets? If you’ve been to The Big Easy, you know that a beignet is a French donut – fried dough covered with powdered sugar. It is delicious.
The hotel lobby has a kiosk that sells them by the bag every morning; the hotel restaurant offers them; there are beignet shops at every turn. Beignets are ubiquitous, omnipresent and a must-have when you’re in this city.