RBMA: Thunder, Lightning and Meetings...

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Arriving in a thunderstorm in Orlando on Saturday was just the beginning. On Sunday, while the early RBMA attendees were in meetings and exhibitors were putting the finishing touches on their booths, guests at the Loew's Royal Pacific Hotel were being ordered from the pool due to local lightning strikes.

Welcome to Orlando in June!

The chances are good that you have attended several - perhaps even many - conferences over the years. Having been in the unique position of having been an exhibitor, sponsor, speaker and attendee, I thought I would take just a moment to give you a peek behind the curtain of a typical conference. The first image below is of one aisle at 1:00 p.m. here at the RBMA Conference in Orlando. The second image is the same aisle at 6:00 p.m.

As you can see, much happened in six hours. A small army of people finished up their preparations to beat a deadline and the result was an efficient and effective opening.

The message here is to please try to remember at your next conference that the exhibitors spend many thousands of dollars several times a year to attend the RBMA and other conferences. The only thing they ask in return is for your attention during what are usually identified in your program as "Break in the exhibit hall."

Without these exhibitors, there is no conference so please use these breaks not as a time to catch up on e-mail or to grab a bite to eat, but to reward the investments of these important companies.

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One of the enduring qualities of those in the medical imaging profession is their passion for continuing education. That we strive to learn more and more is a key to our success.

I learned today from Joe White, a principal at LarsonAllen ( www.larsonallen.com) that ignoring industry surveys hurts the profession. You know these surveys: They come every so often begging us for some time to recite business statistics. Most of the time, we ignore them or hit "delete" to make them go away.

What we accomplish when we ignore or delete surveys is the failure to seize an opportunity to contribute to our own success.

That survey information, you see, is data that helps you by providing you with important benchmarks against which you can measure your own progress or overall health. But if no one responds, or if too few respond, everyone loses.

So the next time you get a survey, from the RBMA or anyone else, please take a few minutes to respond. It's good for you.

BTW, White's preso was not on ignoring surveys, it was a review of survey data. More on that later.