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A Culture of Service

A Trade Show Displays Tip:

This summer I had the pleasure of managing the booth set up of a client of mine for two different shows in Las Vegas; one in June and the other the end of August. One was a 20 x 30’ booth and the other was a 20 x 40’ booth. In each instance the labor to set up each of the trade show displays and tear it down exceeded $17,000, so the event each time was a major investment for my client. Each of the two shows had different service contractors and each of the shows had more than 300 booths. One was serviced by GES and the other was serviced by Freeman.

At the conclusion of the first trade show, the contractor promptly rolled up the aisle carpet and began the process of moving empty trade show displays cases back into the hall; first to the booths farthest away from the loading door and then continued toward the middle to the back of the hall. This is nothing new, however the procedure they used was. At no time that evening would any of the fork lift drives put more than one item on their forks at once. It didn’t matter if it was a 4 x 4 x 8 crate or a pop up trade show displays case which had wheels built into the molding of the case. Being situated in the middle of the hall, I watched over and over again, each and every driver transport one (1) item at a time from the outside of the hall in back, into the cavernous hall and then back again. At no time were there any individuals pushing anything on 4 wheel dollies or anyone with a pallet jack moving skids etc. This was the epitome of inefficiency.Trade Show Displays | Pop Up Displays

Now I’m not big on making moral judgments on other people, but when it happens in my back yard where I’ve been given charge of setting up a client’s trade show displays and I’m looking out for their financial well-being, then I will say something. On this particular occasion, I don’t know if it was lack of supervision, out of control employees, or was it a corporate culture that has run a muck; but it was obvious that each of the employees was there that evening to get a prescribed number of hours on the time clock, which by the way, was on overtime which was reflected in the drayage rate and was also reflected in the hourly rate I was paying for each of the 4 men on the crew at $144 per hour. Each man ended up sitting down and waiting for 2 hours each after they initially dismantled our trade show displays booth. The second show, with a different contractor, had about double the number of forklifts working the hall and only used the forklifts for large items and was able to get the crates and smaller trade show displays returned in about a third of the time. Night and day difference! I certainly hope what I experience this summer was an aberration and not the norm, but something tells me that I will be seeing more of this in future Las Vegas shows.

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