Monday, July 20, 2009

TSEA and the exhibit manager

TSEA's annual TS2 event opens in Chicago today. If you are an exhibit manager and you haven't heard of this organization, take a look at the reports from The Windy City and consider keeping up with these folks.

The Trade Show Exhibitor's Association has been around for years and was my first exposure to a group doing what I did. Being a 3D communicator in an internal marketing communications group led by 2D people made me a bit of the odd guy out. However, when I went to my first Trade Show for Trade Shows (TS2) years ago, I found myself among my own kind and feeling like less of an island.

At TSEA I met those people in my community--the trade show and events community--and learned that what we did wasn't just an afterthought to the brochures and executive interaction that my bosses found so important. What I did learn was that me and my peers at other companies creating the selling environment that directly generated revenue and profit for our employers. Wow, I thought, this job could really make a difference to the bottom line.

Being able to walk the exhibit floor as a potential buyer and interact with my fellow TSMs and our suppliers (some of whom I still connect with to this day) gave me the energy to seek more. More information to make my exhibits powerful selling tools. More information to train our exhibit staffers. More information to justify and support the ROI of my program. It was that great culmination of training, salesmanship and camradarie that we all need as professionals in whatever field we choose.

While Lee Knight's Exhibitor Show draws bigger and is the CEU keeper now, it is always good to know that there is more than one source for information and training. and, for me anyway, the original trade show for trade shows.

Keep up the good work, TSEA. I hope to be back in a future year.


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