Unless you’ve been on a desert island for the past year, you likely heard about the meltdown of Hollywood bad boy, Charlie Sheen. In a seemingly endless series of rambling interviews, he both looked and sounded like a crazy man.
While hopefully you’ve never had a booth staff member on the scale of Charlie-mania, you’ve likely had some that didn’t reflect well on your company. Perhaps they show up late for booth duty (in less than professional form), or they are complete renegades during their time off-duty from the booth.
It’s amazing how many booth staff members seem to forget that they are at a show to W-O-R-K. While it’s a given that there will be opportunities for fun times too (especially in cities like Las Vegas or New Orleans), bottom line is that time spent on the show floor is for working. Even during times when the booth is closed, staff members need to remain good ambassadors for your company. Keep in mind that there are competitors and prospects roaming throughout the host city, and you never know when one or more of them is watching the behavior of your team.
Now I know what you’re thinking … “We can’t control what our booth staff does on their own time!” But is any time in the show city truly “personal time”? Be sure to set guidelines for expected behavior ahead of the show. If staffers won’t agree to a code of conduct, rethink whether or not they deserve to be a part of the booth experience.
It’s not fair to either your company or the rest of your team to be judged based on the behavior of one “wild & crazy” staffer. Create an environment where the team can have a good time, yet remain a positive reflection of your corporate image.
© 2011-12 Marlys K. Arnold (Reprinted from the March 2011 TradeShowTips Online. To receive tips like this in your inbox every month, please take a moment to fill out this request.)
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About the Author:
With experiences as both an exhibitor and a show organizer, Marlys Arnold has a unique perspective on trade show exhibiting. She travels the country consulting and training both exhibitors and show managers, and is the author of Build a Better Trade Show Image (2002), host of the Trade Show Insights podcast and creator of the ExhibitorEd training kit. She can be reached at www.imagespecialist.com.
Watching bar staff be harassed by people in their work uniforms straight away puts me off that company or product….and having to deal with an obviously hung over staff member at the booth after what was obviously a heavy night on the town is also off putting
So true, Katrina! You’d be amazed at what I’ve seen and heard from exhibitors in hotel restaurants, elevators, etc. They must remember that everywhere they go (especially in their company uniform) that people are watching & listening.