Now Serving! ….wait…Why?

I'll Get Right On That!

When traveling around the globe with a host of equipment, personal luggage, staff coming in from all over the map, tis best to remember the most important kindergarten rule! BE NICE! Treat others as you would want to be treated. This should be a given with adult professionals, right?

When a gypsy clan arrives near a city, often they are cast off as non-citizens. Well, sometimes there is service-staff that support the trade-show-gypsies that can be treated less than.  This is unacceptable! The vendors that support the shows are travelling all over the map in many cases and are just as worn out as the show manager or sales staff sent to take care of the exhibit booth. Having a title of C-P-VP-D-M- or just a TG makes no difference; we are all working professionals in our respective trades.

Traveling internationally the main rule is to be especially respectful of the country you are in; and if you do not speak the language YOU are a visitor and need to be grateful if the trade show support company can accommodate you with a representative that speaks your language. Hence you are in another clan’s camp; do not act like YOUR clan’s fool!

With this in mind, there have been many incidents that I have seen an agent at the service desk ripped to shreds by an individual that “thinks” they are above all the rules and certainly above the staff that are supporting the show. Now, let’s see…Individual A did not get their shipment out in time and they are screaming at the service staff about, whose incompetence? HUMMM…the service agent is very anxious to work with this person, especially with other more amenable customers in line.

Most trade-show-gypsies know that you are professional and nice to the staff that is supporting you at the show if you want to get what you need done. It is human nature to be more responsive to someone who treats you with respect. The service teams are an extremely hard-traveling clan of gypsies and often do not get thanked near enough for everything that goes right. In many cases they have very little control over many of the issues that come across the desk. The service agents work more as liaisons between shippers, exhibitors, I&D outsourced companies, and even some of the more specific show services (AV/Photography/Catering/Floral). They go by the orders in the computer and if there is a discrepancy it is up to the exhibitor to provide copies of the documentation to get the order corrected or changed. The service staff work very long hours and the thing to remember is everything that is done at a show is temporary; meaning it has to travel and be set-up and taken down and travel again, so many things that can wrong, just think about moving your office!

There are some conference/trade show service companies that are extremely large, and if you are in this industry you know who they are; the staff and agents from these large organizations are put under significant stress to support in some cases thousands of exhibitors not to mention all the union teams, and ancillary service groups. They are an on-site functional team and can be exceptionally helpful in getting logistics and services coordinated, they will help you work with the various union groups on the floor; have items sent to the booth, and assist with paperwork. The service agents have a really tough gig!

Certainly, I have had my own experiences that were not favorable, but keeping in mind the above statements it does make more sense when you reconsider the situations. I have also had very good luck in getting things sorted out and resolutions completed; albeit a bit time-consuming.

I do have a favorite CA-based company that supports mid-level shows! They are outstanding! Ping me if you need a great show service company I will be more than happy to refer them! (No! No gold coins go across the palm for my recommendations)


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