November 28, 2007

Chicago Redux

Last morning in the windy city, and finally some blog time....

The RSNA trade show / conference went well. Long days - we'd get over to the sprawling McCormick Place a few hours before the official opening and wander the halls to network with our customers before the real customers (radiologists, techs, practice managers) swarmed the equipment booths. Then a long day of alternating booth duty or walking the floor visiting other booths and just mixing and mingling. I saw more people I know in random encounters than I actually visited on the floor.

My client does not really market or sell directly to the end customer too much, so really our booth was somewhat slow in terms of walk-up traffic but lots of customers and potential customers dropped by to touch base, renew relationships, and discuss ongoing and future projects so it was a good week.

Not a huge week of marketing and selling for me personally - mostly, its a chance to renew acquaintances - my client has a new president so I got to meet and spend some time with him. I do a lot of work with their clients so its nice to get some face time to supplement the usual email and phone contacts. And its nice to see and spend time with these folks in general - they are good people, and since we are located on opposite ends of the country (Connecticut and San Diego) I do not get to see them all that often. That being said, a pile of my business cards and brochures disappeared during the week; and I'm walking away with a few projects and potential trips to open up 2008.

On the food front, results were mixed. I picked up a bag of groceries when I arrived, so I had some nice Stash tea to drink, bananas, and breakfast bars in the morning. One morning I met clients in the hotel for a bowl of oatmeal. Lunches were fairly wretched - trade show fare (pizza and salad two days, panini one day, all eaten on the fly). I got invited to business dinners every night - Harry Carey's on Sunday, Hugo's Frog Bar on Monday, and the Capitol Grill on Tuesday. I avoided the traditional Chicago steak until last night; pasta on Sunday and Fish on Monday. And more alcohol than I usually I need to detox a bit the rest of the week.....

And I got to practice 3x this week; the hotel fitness club was pretty extensive with a room filled with treadmills, stair steppers, and bikes, and a weight room, plus a poolside area. I found a nice spot to throw down my mat, and despite the comings and goings of others and the 80's and 90's pumping fitness music, I got my asanas in on Saturday night, and Monday and Tuesday mornings.

Now a more leisurely morning - I'm already showered and finishing off the last of the breakfast larder; and doing some email work. Then to pack and head to the lobby to catch the airport express. I have an 11:00 a.m. direct flight back.....e nice to get back to my real life.

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