Monday, March 23, 2009

Comment about IRGA Convention Educational Breakout Sessions

Over the many years, one of the things that's always bothered me about IRGA Convention Educational Breakout Sessions is when a specific Educational Breakout session covered anything having to do with "how to streamline / improve a reprographics business and make money", but was led by someone who has never been in the reprographics business.

How in the world can any person give relevant advice as to how to operate, change, revise, update, streamline a business, or improve profit, when that person has not had (himself or herself) any direct experience operating (and, along with that, managing the top, middle and bottom lines of) a reprographics company?

Many, many years ago, after listening to a speaker at the IRGA and shaking my head "where in the world is this guy coming from? I don't agree with 80% of what he just finished talking about" ..... (I can't even remember what the topic of that particular Educational Breakout session was, but that's not the point of this post) ..... a friend of mine (one of my mentors), also in the audience, leaned over to me, and said, "Joel, consider the source."

After hearing those words from one of my mentors, I have, ever since then, told friends that, when they attend IRGA Educational Sessions and hear "experts" talk about various subjects, "you must first consider the source" (meaning, who said that, what is that person's background, and what is that person's direct experience?) if the speaker has had considerable first-hand experience, that would give me reason to think hard about what was said, and, just to the opposite, if that speaker has not had any first-hand experience, that would give me reason to wonder if I should even think, even a little bit, about what was said.


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