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This might have been the first conference I have been to in a very long time. I went in support of Debbie Stier who as far as I can see is one of the few people in the publishing industry who truly get how the Internet and social media is changing that world. The conference is called re-Set and the panel; Anna Bernasek, Michael Eisner, Tom Peters and Gary Vaynerchuk was moderated by Seth Godin.
Each person gave their intro, questions were asked and an interesting exchange of thoughts that are relative to business for the times we live in.
Tom Peters began speaking about how he is 67 years old and can not believe that he spent an hour an a half tweeting to people last night. Certainly the world is not what it used to be. Gary V spoke about how the world is traveling at such a rapid pace and we are living in the era of brand building. Brands can be large, they can be niche, they can be small companies or big companies and they can now sell or connect directly to the end user. That is a huge shift. The Internet has enabled brands to use sweat equity to create audiences and that costs nothing. Anna spoke about how important integrity and trust are the most valuable national asset. We need to use those skills to think strategically in order to create value and wealth in our businesses. Eisner spoke about partnerships. He has written a book that comes out in September that is called Working Together: Why Partnerships Succeed. He interviewed 10 partners from Linda and Bill Gates to Ron Howard and Brian Glazer to Warren Buffet and Charlie Munger and Valentino and Giammetti. Interesting topic. He believes that the key to a good partnership is being equal and not having jealousy or envy towards your partner. An incredibly interesting topic as I have always believed a good partnership is the key to many successful happy people.
There was talk about the recession and how we seem to be moving out of it yet into a very different place. Seth believes the recession will never end yet we are seeing the end of the Industrial Age. This is now the time to reinvent ourselves. Industries will die and new ones will crop up but the Internet has given us a huge platform to re-set.
Conversations were endless but the bottom line was business is always going to be business but we need to use the tools of the day to understand our brands, understand our customers, connect with our community in a way that creates a productive workplace and above all excellence.
All and all, a really well done event. Interesting conversations…and nice to see faces that I haven't seen in a while.