News & Articles - George Bothwell

  • Prevent becoming a commercial casualty by avoiding current events debates

    On February 14, 2018, a mass shooting occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Seventeen people were killed and 17 more wounded. It seemed yet another tragic shooting of numerous innocent victims that provokes intense political and media interest for a few days and then is eclipsed by other events. In this case, the Parkland shooting has gained a momentum that has grown in news coverage, causing a number a special interest groups to wade into the…

    Event Branding & Marketing, Event Operations, Meeting Community, The Business of Meetings

  • Social media: Just because you can, does not mean you should

    Americans touch their smart telephones 2600 times per day, as cited in a study by The Economist. According to Group M, Americans spend, on average, almost four hours per day of personal time online, over four hours per day in Britain and almost five hours in Hong Kong. That does not include being online at work! These statistics highlight the seemingly unstoppable growth of social media in our lives. The benefits of this new technology have been extraordinary. Anyone can…

    Event Branding & Marketing, Event Operations, Social Media & Technology

  • Could your event be used as a platform for someone else’s cause?

    On September 1, 2016, National Football League player Colin Kaepernick opted to kneel during the national anthem, creating a countrywide controversy, which has grown into one of America’s most intense national debates. From every corner bar watching Monday night football to the White House, opinions have been voiced, insults traded and threats made. Social media has proven to be the very powerful accelerant for this explosive situation. The NFL is the richest sports organization in history with US$13 billion in…

    Contingency/Disaster Planning, Event Operations

  • Treat attendees to a day at the Bronx Zoo

    In 1967, the iconic New Yorkers Simon and Garfunkel released a song “At The Zoo” in which they sang “It’s all happening at the zoo.”  It is perhaps a little late, but I am happy to report that it is true for the Bronx Zoo in New York. I confess that for many years I did not know that there was a Bronx Zoo. Whenever I heard the Bronx Zoo mentioned, it was in reference to Yankee Stadium. It was…

    Corporate Travel & Incentives, Employee Incentives, Event Operations, Speakers & Entertainment, Special Events

  • Free speech: It is worth the price

    In January of this year, a mob attacked a building at the University of California, Berkeley. Their purpose was to prevent someone with whom they disagreed from speaking. In April, another speaker invited to address an audience at the same university was similarly prevented from speaking due to threats of violence. These incidences and many others like them have raised serious questions about the legitimacy of a right that once was taken for granted – free speech. Indeed, there are…

    Career Development, People & Profiles

  • Stretch goals: Why your special event should have an exercise program

    Any presenter will tell you that one of the worst times to make a presentation or give a speech is immediately after lunch. The end of the day also ranks high in the least favourite times to speak. There is a long held adage, “What the bottom cannot endure, the mind cannot absorb.” The reality is that the more people remain sedentary at a special event, working in an office or indeed throughout the whole day, the less well they…

    Event Operations, Speakers & Entertainment

  • Fake news can cause real damage to your business

    As we find ourselves at the end of the Christmas season, a time of profound faith for many, it may be helpful to reflect on what appears to be our modern era of disbelief. Faith in institution has eroded worldwide. From the U.S. to Spain, Gallup World Polls show declining trust in governments. A recent study shows that a minority of the population (40 per cent) in OECD countries trusts their governments. Keep in mind that all the OECD countries…

    Event Operations, Social Media & Technology

  • Trump shock: What can we learn from the U.S. election?

    The U.S. presidential election is finally over. Since Donald Trump descended the escalator of the Trump Tower on June 16 of last year to announce his candidacy for President of the United States, there have been a stunning series of unforeseen events. All the old rules are now obsolete. These events seem to conclude that the experts are never right. Long-held assumptions are rendered baseless. Hopes have become fears and fears have become hopes. Now the pundits and party leaders…

    Career Development, Meeting Community, People & Profiles

  • Sad events can be special events too: An appeal to event planners

    My life has been very fortunate. I have had to endure only a few sad and no tragic events. Recently, however, we had a death in the family where I was assigned the duties of organizing the funeral and related activities. This was the first time that I had to oversee such an event. I soon realized that although unique in its level of grief and confusing emotions, it is also a special event management challenge – albeit a very…

    Event Operations, Special Events

  • Can a corporate event be fun?

    It had been a long and difficult day – an early start with numerous meetings and endless telephone calls. That evening I was required to host our corporate table at a charity fundraising event. It was one of many fundraisers that I had attended over the previous few months – often at the same venue with the same menu. As usual, I was seated at a table of 10, half of whom were corporate colleagues and the remaining guests were…

    Event Operations, Speakers & Entertainment, Special Events

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