This was actually a Facebook post in my group and then I realized it was worthy of it’s own blog post. If you are in the Wisconsin or Illinois area – come join my vendors group
I wanted to post something today and it will sound rant-ish… but it’s been on my heart lately with event season and I need to say it. So if this strikes you hard, it probably should. If it doesn’t, then it’s a non issue, but I feel the need to say it.
TL;DR – If you booked an event – show up for it or notify the organizer you aren’t coming. It sucks having empty spots.
Organizing events is not easy. I try to be pretty transparent when things happen with events that impact others, but I try to keep the “stressful” stuff out of it. There are a lot of behind the scenes things that need to be done in advance of the event leading up to the day of the event, when I arrive at the venue and even before vendors arrive. My job is to make organizing events look easy and deal with those details so you don’t have to. Many of you who have gotten to know me really well know that some mornings are not as stress free as I’d hope for them to be and you can tell, but you know I’ve done what I can to ensure that it doesn’t impact you.
I completely understand things come up that require people to cancel at the last minute. Family emergencies, illness – nobody can predict the flu, car accidents, things that change your plans with zero notice. Those kinds of things happen and calling the event organizer is not first on your list of people to reach out to. Even if it hits you a day later, I get it. At some point in time, you’ll hear from that rep.
All that being said, a major point of frustration for me, as an organizer, is when I work to coordinate something and a rep who has committed to the spot, paid for the spot, has received all of the emails and details leading up to the event is a no show. No call, no email, text, voicemail, smoke signal, telepathic message saying they can’t be there. Believe it or not, if you are in one of my events, you become “my people” and I worry when you aren’t there.
What happens then?
There is an empty spot in the event with your company name on it. The other vendors will try to fill in the gap by expanding their booths, meant to fit into a specific sized space, to fill in the gap, but it’s obvious the event wasn’t set up like that.
The reps will notice the empty spots and ask who no showed. Believe me, those names are remembered and shared with others. I’m not running around telling people who didn’t show , but it’s not hard to figure out based on the list of vendors on the events lists.
Someone will inevitably come to the greeter table to ask where that person is because they were hoping to see the product line. The disappointment on that person’s face when they find out that the rep isn’t there is something you don’t want to experience. Then, we scramble to find someone else to provide as a contact to that customer to ensure they receive amazing service by someone who may have been able to be there, had I been aware that the rep wasn’t going to attend the show. And I’m sure the company name is remembered as not having reliable reps.
A rep who came to the show to shop, knowing they weren’t able to get in to the show comes to ask what happened to the rep who was supposed to be there. Most times, all I can say is “I don’t know.” I don’t actually have any idea what happened, but I’m hoping that the no show rep is not injured or sick and needs help. The rep who is there as a shopper will inevitably ask why I didn’t call them. On the day of, getting the event going, if someone is a no show, I don’t have time to bring in someone at the last minute – by last minute I mean 30 minutes or less before the event starts. And – I appreciate all of you who keep your displays in your car for that reason, but the last minute swap usually won’t work because we have already broken down the space.
Why wouldn’t someone show up?
First – like I said before – emergencies happen. Although, when the emergency has passed, they usually reach out to explain themselves. Understandable and will resolve itself.
Second, the other reason, the rep has double booked themselves or gone out of business. In either case in scenario number two, it’s important to be communicative, if not to me, then your business sponsor as it impacts them as well..If you are an upline who is dovetailing downline reps into an event, few things are harder to hear than the person you trusted to take on an event is a no show. That is a hit to your organization and company name.
What will really throw you off your game is if you have left one business for another. Your name is Mudd in the event arena now and when you try to get back into the event with organizers, they will remember you and likely not book you.
Every time I host an event, something like this happens. And while I realize it’s not the issue of the vendors who participate, it’s a peek behind the curtain so you can see how something that seems small can have a ripple effect on an event, a company and the people around you. If you’ve organized an event, you know how difficult this can be and have probably experienced the same difficulties.
Thanks for taking the time to read my incredibly wordy and not grammatically correct post, my friends.