E-Commerce with an emphasis on Social Technologies
Using the word “intense” brings me back to High School in the late ’70′s, but it fits. Here’s a trip through time…
The year started out as intense as it gets as my son landed in Kandahar, Afghanistan on Christmas Day 2012. The thread of that story ran through Labor Day Weekend 2013, 9 months of pins and needles. In the end, praise God, everything ended well. But boy did I ever underestimate the intensity of having a son in a war zone. (See my linear updates here.)
Meanwhile, I worked on a Web site redeployment project for an insurance agency in Westchester County while at the same time building relationships with Jive Software and other folks in the NY/NJ Metro area.
The first business trip of the year was to ICMG 2013 in St. Pete. See the ICMG Gallery here. It was at ICMG that I found out that I’d be going to Abu Dhabi in March. More on that later…
A week later came the long trip to San Diego, The Hotel Del, and the PIMA Annual Meeting 2013.
Immediately on the heels of PIMA, I flew to OK City for Scott Klososky’s dynamite Technology Infused Leadership course. (Unfortunately, I can’t locate that image folder. Doh!)
Next up was a great chance to impart wisdom to agents and carrier reps at the always-terrific Agent’s Council on Technology Conference in Dallas. Spot-on group of people.
Immediately following ACT, a new client flew me to Miami for a private Social Tech Boot Camp. (Sorry, no images allowed.)
Then things really picked up for a wild ride around the world.
Stop #1: Back in OK City for Scott Klososky’s Business Intelligence / Big Data Boot Camp. Awesome.
Stop #2: The Minneapolis Social Tech Boot Camp for Insurance Executives hosted by DRIASI.
Stop #3: Qasar Al Sarab near Abu Dhabi in the Liwa Desert on the Saudi Arabian Peninsula and a Private Boot Camp for Munich Re Health Insurance Marketing Executives from around the world – definitely a high point of the year, albeit an exhausting one.
Stop #4: PIAAR Social Tech Boot Camp for Insurance Agents in Little Rock, AR.
Phew! That was a lot to bite off!
The next thing that happened was on a Saturday. April 20th. At a neighbor’s house. A fateful meeting with the COO of Destiny Rescue USA. I have an incredibly powerful, but oh-so-personal, piece of media from that lunch discussion about Social Tech and Destiny Rescue. More on that later.
Things picked up again with the Baltimore/Washington Boot Camp, hosted by Susan Hussar at The Hartford. While one of the smaller sessions of the year, no less helpful to the attendees.
Immediately from there, I was back to Florida and the Fraternal Alliances Meeting. Let me just say that Social Tech is like manna from heaven for Fraternals. Wow.
Immediately following that event was another Private Boot Camp at a national Broker/Agency in Philadelphia. Hosted by the CEO for his leadership team, that all-day session was another highlight of the year, more because of the engagement of the group around the topic, as well as the level of understanding of the CEO. (Again, no pictures allowed.)
The months of May and June were focused primarily on taking advantage of the market and selling our house. Thank you God, it sold within 2 weeks when we finally listed with an agent. Selling the house was brutally tough, especially with my son in Afghanistan and all the memories from 13 years in that house, plus just the sheer physical work to get it sold. Glad that’s behind me.
IHRIM-CLE invited me to speak at a session in July. That was a fun session with a group of HR Executives based in CLE.
July closed with the kickoff of a client project in Philly built around the 12 Step Process for implementing Social Tech. Breaking down the 12 Steps into 6 months, that project will conclude in February 2014 with a detailed Social Tech Strategy. Savvy leaders generate great results. Nuf said.
In August, I returned to HubSpot #Inbound13 in Boston. This is where things changed for me. I wrote about it here.
On the way back from Inbound, I stopped in to see another one of the most savviest agents on the planet, Ryan Hanley, in Albany, NY. See the Google+ vidcast we collaborated on here.
For Labor Day, Diane and I traveled to Seattle for a mental break. Zach was leaving Afghanistan. I had some mileage and points to use. So off we went. What a trip it was. I’ll never forget getting the call to my cell phone near Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood, “Your soldier has left Afghanistan, sir.” Tears of joy that day.
From Portland, OR, I flew to Phoenix and the MedSupp Conference…
and then immediately to Portland, ME for the Munich Re Maine Event, a brilliant, invitation-only meet-up.
A couple weeks later and there we were standing with our son and his new bride. More tears of joy.
From there, I went back into New York City for another terrific BDI event for Insurance Exec’s involved with Social Tech.
The next day, thanks to Jive Software and New York Life, I spoke at the Manhattan Customer Experience Network on International CX Day – very, very cool.
The next big event was the milestone NYC Social Tech Boot Camp a couple weeks later, hosted at USI in Manhattan. Truly impactful on a number of levels.
The next day I dropped my daughter off at JFK for her 8 week student-teaching gig in St. Croix! The life, huh?!?!
Going into the home-stretch, just before Halloween, I ran another Private Social Tech Boot Camp, again near Philly.
Yet another Private Boot Camp was scheduled for the distribution partners of a client insurance broker. (no pictures)
And then finally, it was off once again to the other side of the world to help the Social Media team at Destiny Rescue.
Without exception, the Destiny Rescue trip to Thailand was the single most intense experience of my life. What started as an innocent meeting at a neighbor’s house in April will likely end up (I hope) as a full-time effort for several years in one of the toughest categories – #humantrafficking and #childsexslavery.
Truthfully, I couldn’t do much in December – physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally spent.
But I’m looking forward to 2014. I suspect it will be even more intense.
Comments welcome. Am I NUTS?!?!