Monday, May 23, 2011

Building Business the Givner Way

I always look forward to seeing what Howard Givner has to say in his Event Solutions business column. It’s usually clever, insightful and right on. So when I had the chance to hear him speak at the May ISES meeting in Minneapolis, I jumped at the chance.

Howard did not disappoint, of course. His presentation, Best Practices for Building Event Business, was full of lessons for the event planners in the room. Here are some of the take-aways I thought particularly noteworthy:

• Many small businesses fail because the owner confuses the craft versus the business of the craft. It’s critical to work on your business as well as in your business.

• You need to manage your growth. Don’t lose focus on servicing your clients. It’s a lot easier to keep existing clients happy than find new ones.

• The number one reason for unhappy clients: embarrassment—looking bad to their boss, guests, the media and others.

The last one doesn’t surprise me a bit. Someone told me once that my number one priority was to make my boss look good. The same thing should go for clients. What are some ways you make your clients look good? Share with us, and we’ll follow up in a future issue.