CEDIA Management Conference 2010: Run Your Business With 100% Confidence
CEDIA Management Conference wrapped up in New Orleans on Friday, March 6, with a renewed commitment to education, training, marketing, your company's financial health and getting the right people to work in your business.
The thought-provoking three-day event brought together some of the Custom Electronics industry's best and brightest as it kicked off with the incomparable Connie Podesta, who is an organizational therapist and expert in the psychology of human behavior. Podesta's highly entertaining presentation included key points such as personal responsibility, communication, life balance, leadership, handling change and productivity. She encouraged the packed room of attendees to embrace change and “learn everything the kids are doing in terms of social networking so you can reach them in ways that are meaningful to them.”
First rate interactive presentations included Patrick Thean, who advised everyone to, “watch your blind side”. One way is to do so, he said is to "make adjustments to your plan every week to keep from being caught off guard, or 'blind-sided'.” Thean also encouraged attendees to define their 'one thing'. The 'one thing' should be a winning move for your company. He stated that too many people try to do too much instead of focussing on that 'one thing'. Instead of taking every opportunity that comes along, he said that, “Opportunities should only be taken if they get you and your company to your 'Big Hairy Audacious Goal' or BHAG. After establishing your BHAG, you should then work on your company's brand promise. It should be targeted to attract your core customers.” Thean also asked attendees what action triggers they can put into their environment to trigger positive change .
Patty Prosser presented a plan for finding good people. “The right people, align with your company's core values, and are motivated by what you offer through your culture, structure, leadership style, recognition and reward programs,” Prosser said. Drilling down deeper in his presentation was Doug Weinstein, who provided insight into how to get the right people, keep them doing the right work for their particular personality and develop them into valuable professionals through his presentation, titled “Building a Workforce: Employee Development”. Weinstein included an exercise that isolated each person's unique ability, competence and incompetence to make sure you have the right people doing the right thing in your organization.
Steve Firszt discussed core values and explained they are the commandments by which your company lives and are authentic beliefs that clearly define how your employees should and should not act. Key questions to help establish your core values are: 1) Can you envision these values being valid for you in 10 or 20 years from now? 2) Would you hold on to them if one or more became a competitive disadvantage? 3) If you were to start a new organization tomorrow, what core values would you want regardless of the industry?
Dave Stevens explained the importance of establishing a brand promise and building value, Paraphrasing from the book The Rockefeller Habits, “You don't have a real strategy if it doesn't pass these two tests: That what you are planning to do really matters to your existing and potential customers; and second, it differentiates you from your competition.”
CustomRetailer's own columnist, Leslie Shiner, focussed on what she does best: Building a Financial Future. Leslie's straight talking, no nonsense approach asked attendees, “Have you delegated the financial responsibility or have you abdicated financial accountability for your company? Could you take responsibility for your books today if your accountant left the company? Do you know what your financials are telling you?