As this post goes live, we are in the process of kicking off #Q4Live Tampa 2020. To borrow from Jimmy Buffett, “The weather is here, wish you were beautiful.” JK, you’re all beautiful to us!! Well, there’s a couple of you who have an occasional off day, but who doesn’t?! 😏
This is the 15th time we have held this event and assembled some of the great industry leaders – that’s kind of crazy to us. What a privilege, a privilege we don’t take lightly!
When we have people take time out of their crazy busy lives to spend time with us, we set one primary goal: that everyone leaves feeling more confident and better prepared for success than they arrived.
It takes the room
However, as hard as we work to make that happen, we can only create the environment and agenda for that potential to be met. It’s up to everyone in the room to assume a bit of that responsibility as well. Each attendee will take responsibility for finding their confidence and success but also for helping provide it for others.
For those who haven’t attended before, Q4Live is likely different from any conference you've ever experienced. We don't create multiple tracks, we don't have an exhibit hall, and we intentionally limit the number of attendees. There's nothing wrong with any of those other conference standards; we just know that we can host the most impactful event when we keep everyone together and focused on the topics at hand.
We have Q4i member agencies in the room, guest agencies, and vendor guests. Everyone who attends is expected to use their voice and be an active participant in every conversation.
We all have successes and failures to share; we all have sources of confidence and insecurities. We ask everyone not to be so humble that they don't share their victories. But we also ask them not to be so arrogant that they don’t share their insecurities as well. It's only when we all put all of that out the table we're able to ensure we each leave more confident and better prepared for success.
Announcing our 2020 theme
Most of you know that we pick a theme every year. We use it to keep us focused in what we write, in what we work on with our member agencies, but also in what we do internally as the Q4i team.
While we have had themes going back to our beginning, it was 2015 when they took on a new level of both internal and external motivation for us. That year we focused on making everything we touched as Simple as possible. Whether it was a new resource for our agencies or revisiting an old one, we did everything we could to make its utilization as simple as possible. It’s surprising how much work it takes to create “simple.”
- In 2016 we challenged you and ourselves to do what was necessary to Remain Relevant in a rapidly changing industry environment.
- 2017 brought a focus on the Accidental tendencies of the industry; we challenged you to become more Intentional in everything you do.
- 2018 rung in a New Normal, embracing the fact that this “ain’t your daddy’s benefits industry anymore.” We came to grips with the reality that the pace of change is faster than it's ever been before, but slower than it will ever be again. Constant change is our new normal.
- Of course, we just ended 2019 in which we challenged you to Get Your Shift Together. Yes, we had two intentional meanings. We are experiencing some of the most significant business SHIFTs the industry has ever demanded. Still, we often have to get our SHIFT together to make the big ones possible.
Yes, we do have fun with our themes and may push an occasional boundary, but they are effective for us. They keep us focused not just on what we bring to you and the industry, but in terms of what we focus on internally. We hold ourselves to the theme before we challenge you.
So, in the spirit of accountability, just exactly what kind of SHIFTs did we accomplish this year?
- We've expanded our team with new full-time team members and a part-time coach.
- We visually rebranded Q4i.
- We expanded on the marketing services we offer to clients.
- We built new clarity in our messaging.
- We’re in the process of building out a Learning Management System.
- We added a Yelp-like vendor directory.
- We are in the very early stages of writing our first book. (Depending on how it goes, it could also be our last. 🙂)
As humbly as we can say it, we're proud of what we accomplished. We stood back and felt, "We have upped our game!” But we know we still have a LONG way to go. We recognize that the industry has a long way to go. We suspect many of you have a long way to go as well.
We don't want to lose this focus, and it has led us to our theme for 2020. We've already started to up our game . . .
Now, up yours!
Okay, maybe that is one of those boundaries we push from time to time, but we do believe 2020 is the year we all have to focus on upping our respective games. And, for our attendees, that all starts with this week at Q4Live. We have built our agenda around those areas we believe we will all benefit by upping our game.
- Our keynote speaker, Patrick Galvin, will share his insights as to how to up our relationship game as we build our businesses.
- Several successful agencies will share how they got their shift together and are already upping their game in the critical growth areas of marketing, sales, service, and leadership.
- Some of the most exciting vendors in the industry are educating the room on opportunities to up the impact game agencies have with clients.
- We’re hearing from leaders who have upped their game in terms of their organizational brand: defining it, creating the visual, and establishing their presence.
- And, we’ll wrap up the conference with a discussion of how to up your energy game by operating with a startup mentality.
- Along the way, we will all up our networking (and maybe our drinking) game as well.
So, for those of you who weren't able to join us, we apologize in advance when you have to compete against anyone who was here this week. We are all leaving more confident and better prepared for success than we arrived. #SorryNotSorry
But, we are a sharing bunch. Follow #Q4Live this week, and we're certain you will end the week more confident and better prepared for success than you started.
Photo by freshidea