Regional Association Leaders Come Together This Week For LDW

Scott McCormack, chair of the Suppliers Committee, speaks to the group during Tuesday's PPAI Committee Leadership Training session. Scott McCormack, chair of the Suppliers Committee, speaks to the group during Tuesday's PPAI Committee Leadership Training session.

The 16th annual Leadership Development Workshop (LDW) is being held this week in Grapevine, Texas. Hosted by PPAI and the Regional Association Council (RAC), the four-day event began Monday with a PPAI Board of Directors meeting and is followed by today’s training/planning session for PPAI committee and advisory group chairs. LDW continues Wednesday and Thursday with an extensive curriculum designed to provide participants with numerous learning opportunities through general sessions, breakout discussions and sharing activities.

“LDW attendees benefit from ideas and experiences from all over the United States that add new perspective for regional associations to draw from,” says Tom Carpenter, MAS, national accounts manager for Fey Promotional Products Group and a member of the LDW work group. “LDW’s focus on open, non-threatening sharing allows regionals to learn from each other’s successes and failures, and to return to their associations with greater insight, and new and actionable ideas for pain points they struggle with on a daily basis.  It also provides support and shows them that they are not alone in their commitment to make their association and the industry as a whole a better, stronger and more viable marketplace for us all.”

This year, LDW welcomes more than 160 regional attendees as well as PPAI board members and committee chairs. The comprehensive schedule features 28 education sessions with speakers and panelists from PPAI and from within and outside the promotional products industry. At a general session this evening, psychologist and humorist Bruce Christopher’s presentation "Leap! The Net Will Appear,” tackles the fear of failure, one of the most prominent obstacles between people and reaching their true potential.

LDW attendees, among them (From left) Matt Storlien, HPPA, and Brian Porter, PPAMidwest, travel to the annual event to learn best practices and ideas to support their regional associations and to connect with their peers. LDW attendees, among them (From left) Matt Storlien, HPPA, and Brian Porter, PPAMidwest, travel to the annual event to learn best practices and ideas to support their regional associations and to connect with their peers.

“LDW is a venue that provides a learning and sharing experience with the regional association volunteer leadership from across the country,” says Jeff Shaw, president of Shaw Print & Promotion Powered By HALO Branded Solutions and a member of the LDW work group. “The exposure to ideas and critical thought from peers from other regionals helps broaden the perspective of the issues our individual regional associations face. I believe better decisions can be made, moving forward, when critiquing and benchmarking against others, not just from the past experience of our own regional association.”

Carpenter adds, “From my very first LDW, it was obvious to me that the volunteers in attendance were and are committed, giving and competent professionals who were eager to learn and share their experiences. What wasn't obvious was how often I would hear one attendee tell another, ‘I thought we were the only ones with that challenge.’ What has always encouraged me has been that rather than a ‘misery loves company’ attitude, I more often see the strength in numbers mentality prevail.  I have always left LDW feeing stronger and more energized to make my association a better and more vital value to our members.”

The associated Regional Boot Camp, which starts today, brings together regional association leaders for an intensive, hands-on training session designed for their specific needs. It features two separate tracks—one for executive directors and one for incoming and current presidents—as well as opportunities for the two groups to work together.

The 2015 PPAI RAC Volunteer of the Year Award recipients will also be honored at LDW. Lori Bauer, vice president of sales, national accounts at Tampa, Florida-based supplier BIC Graphic USA (UPIC: BIC), will be formally recognized for her accomplishments during a reception and dinner this evening.

filed under industry-news | october-2015
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