Being Lucky

Having been in the event business now for 17 years, I have to say we have an unbelievable track record of never having a keynoter miss an event due to illness or travel.  On a very rare occasion we will have a breakout presenter miss an event due to unforeseen circumstances, mostly travel related, but for the most part it has been remarkably minimal.  Coming up on 1,000 Summits, Institutes and workshops you might say we are one lucky company, and we are, but not lucky the way you might be thinking.

We are blessed to have the presenters we have.  The quality of individuals who tirelessly present to educators ranging from eager to skeptical, and intense to apathetic, is unprecedented in our field.  Their job is no easy task, but WOW are they professionals and do they every care.

Let me give you a recent example of just how dedicated these experts truly are, and believe me they are not alone.  This is not an isolated case. This happened at our very last Summer Institute held August 13-15.

Rick and Becky DuFour spent 16 hours getting to Grand Rapids from Roanoke, VA.  One cancelled flight, one flight delayed two hours, another delayed 30 minutes,

and finally getting to the hotel at 12:15am with Becky kicking off the Institute with an 8:00am keynote in front of 1,000 in-house educators.

Tim Brown had his flight cancelled in Moline so he rented a car and drove six hours so he could arrive in Grand Rapids at 2:00am, and he is not only a presenter but also the emcee kicking off the event and introducing Becky.  And then he had tells me “I got to drive through some beautiful countryside on my six hour road trip.”  And he meant it, and by my calculations it was dark for nearly 5 of those hours.

Jack Balderman has a flight cancelled and drove from Midway Airport in Chicago to Grand Rapids arriving at 4:00am.

And Anthony Muhammad had a flight diverted from Phoenix to Yuma, only be bussed two hours back to Phoenix, to have another flight cancelled, and then hopping on a red-eye to Detroit and then driving to Grand Rapids to get to the Institute at 9:30am.

Are we lucky, you bet your bottom we are. We are lucky to work with people like these people, and we work with more than just these five examples.  We work with hundreds of pros just like these.  And that is why we do what we do.

Okay, a shamless way to end my blogging lapse.

So…I have been sooooo bad about blogging lately.  Lots of really bad reasons I won’t share or make up, so let’s begin again.

Too often I think, “Why in the world would anybody care about what I feel like pontificating about?”  Heck my own wife doesn’t read this blog. And as for my kids (16, 15, 13, 12), I am happy they still like me.  Though I am entering into a flash mob phase of ‘my parents are dorks’, so why set myself up for them telling me I have business all wrong.  Any ways…I do have about a dozen topics I am going to write about over next few weeks.  Then tonight, while sitting our rental in Culver, IN, after watching our 15 year old play lacrosse for his Boarding School (lots to share there…oy vey) I received this email from one of our Associate/Authors, Tom Hierck.  Really nice guy who is writing a book for Solution Tree with one of my favorite human beings, Ken Williams.  Ken and I share a thing for good watches and classic Lincolns.  I’ll write about my ’65 convertible some day soon.  Their book is going to be great, but I promise not to kick into sales mode here.

“Why” is a big deal to me. But you knew that.  Here is another indicator as to why Why is a big deal in schools, and really in all that we are or want to be.  Thanks Tom and Ken.


Tom Hierck                      Ken Williams