I had a great trip to Charlotte, North Carolina this week. I appeared on the Fox Rising morning show on WCCB-TV (I will post a link to the video as soon as I have access to it) and spoke at a seminar on "Smart Visibility" for the Charlotte Business Journal on Friday.
Saturday I gave a presentation and lead a workshop for the eastern regional conference for a network of law firms. I was very impressed with all the attorneys at this event, as they all had that "marketing gene" that is rare in lawyers. But of course that is why they were present at the event. I enjoyed meeting these entrepreneurial lawyers, and hope that I can keep in touch with many of them going forward.
During the workshop, one lawyer (her name was Melissa Jones) had a great observation for law firm business development practices. We were talking about how lawyers succeed when they see themselves as "entrepreneurial" and not just a "lawyers". She said (paraphrased), "Any time lawyers can show clients that we are the same as them (entrepreneurs who face similar business issues and challenges in growing our own businesses), the more we can bond with them as equals. Attorneys need to talk to business professionals using language that proves we are also business professionals". Wow, that was a GREAT point!!! A point that is not just for attorneys... but for anyone who works directly with clients.
I love traveling for speaking events and I am doing a lot more of it, but getting through the airports and other travel related issues is always difficult. I am underwhelmed with the airlines who charge for bags, as I often have an extra suitcase with me to haul copies of my books to the event. I try to fly Southwest Airlines whenever I can (they do not service Charlotte), as they have a great overall attitude, good fares, and two bags checked does not cost more money.
I often wonder if the other airlines are finding the extra money they are making to have a benefit that out-paces how much their customers HATE the additional fees. I spoke with passengers and ticket agents who all agree that it is harming customer satisfaction in a major way. Shocking that Southwest is the most profitable and the other airlines do not copy them. It is like someone in the big chairs at executive offices are saying "WE NEED TO BE DIFFERENT THAN SOUTHWEST....I KNOW, LETS GET PASSENGERS TO HATE US!"
I have several other conferences and meetings where I am speaking coming up in the next six weeks. My goal of 52 presentations in 2009 should work out about right, as I have completed 42 speeches so far this year.
Have A Great Day.