Event: Site Selectors Guild, Salt Lake City, Utah, March 25-27, 2019
Why were you there?
The goal of the event is to create a unique environment to promote learning, networking and relationship building for the site selection consultants and economic developers who lead the profession. The Guild restricts the number of attendees to comfortably match up with their ~50 guild members, some of the top domestic and international consultants in the world. Site Selectors and ED professionals rely on one another to help clients and companies with complex location decisions, so this conference emphasizes knowledge exchange, lead generation & constant networking.
Who did you meet?
I was able to gain significant face time throughout the three days with the targeted guild members. Highlights included Tracy Hyatt Bosman of Biggies Lacy Shapiro, as well as Didi Caldwell of Global Location Strategies, Mike Mullis of JM Mullis, Larry Gigerich of Ginovus, Rajeev Thakur of Newark Grubb Knight Frank, and Bob Hess of NGKF, among many others.
Top 4 things you learned:
- After the Guild conference, the Site Selectors Guild featured the Dayton Region on their social media channels highlighting the First Four and our week of activities leading up to the games.
- The first day highlighted Ms. Holly Sullivan, the leader of Amazon’s HQ2 search process, decision and changes since. More than ever, it felt like one of the two locations they chose (Washington D.C.) was always going to be on of the sites. In fact, they’re building next to a Whole Foods. The efforts from here are not easy, however, as the planning commission in Crystal City, VA, has made similar investments very drawn out (see Boeing).
- As some of the leading site selectors approach retirement, the Guild brings on about five new members each year. They also named Mark Sweeney, formerly of McCallum Sweeney, their first Emeritus Guild Member.
- As all Economic Development professionals put their best foot forward, I was able to see their collateral, commercials, and marketing efforts to see what’s working. Equally as important, gaining insight on what Site Selectors most want.