Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Lighten' up Francis

The day has finally arrived! It's the opening day of the 2013 IPMS National Convention in Loveland, Colorado! As you arrive to the show and find your place in the registration line, I want to offer one final piece of advice: Be patient!
The registration line at the first IPMS convention in 1929.

You may encounter long lines. The staff may fumble with the computers, forms, and registration process. They may encounter situations they haven't planned for. When you start to feel frustrated, please remember that the people who run the convention are volunteers. All of them. They're modelers just like you, not professional event planners.

I’m extremely passionate about quality customer service, so you will not find a more critical customer than me. I can find a way to improve practically any process (which is basically what I do for a living in the software industry). I worked the registration table at the Nats a few years ago and saw that the software was in dire need of a major redesign. Some of the forms were hard to visually scan for the information I needed. I experienced the frustration of the people waiting in line. Some were sympathetic and kind, but a few were obvious in their discontent, including one jerk (whom I knew from a club I once belonged to) who had the nerve to express his frustration out loud. That’s not helpful.

So when you arrive, take a deep breath. Be patient. The contest organizers will appreciate it. They're doing their best.

1 comment:

  1. What? Do you mean that even though I did not take advantage of pre-registration that the convention staff are not going to go out of their way to make sure that when I show up, I get to the front of the line?!? You mean that the other attendees patiently waiting in line will not part the ways to let me register first and fast so I can stage my entries in the best light and get right to the vendor room?!? How DARE they! (just kidding, of course). Good advice, Steve.