Invitation from the 2017 Conference Chair
I am extremely honored to chair the 2017 NAELB Conference and to have the opportunity to work with outstanding committee members Rodney Blecha, Ian Liddell and Kristi Darlington. We have assembled a superior group of speakers that will entertain and educate you and we will be offering numerous opportunities for networking. And if that doesn’t entice you, it’s in Memphis. Need I say more? We are confident you will leave the conference with more contacts, knowledge and Elvis trivia than when you arrived!
The theme for this year’s conference is “The Way We Will Live Next.” In deciding what that could mean to us, I believe we should look at the past and present to guide us to the way we choose to live next.
2016 was a tumultuous year for many, both politically and economically. We saw a deeply divided country emerge over our elections that resulted in chasms unlike I have seen in my lifetime. We also continued to see massive changes in the way business is done. The shift to technology based operations continues to move forward fast and furiously in every aspect of our lives, from online lending (which can be seen as a threat to us), to the demise of the retail store as the market moves to internet sales and to the changes in the way we communicate.
While technology continues to influence our lives in so many ways, and will be the subject of most of the sessions at the conference, I feel it is important to consider what technology can’t do and capitalize on that as well. I like to share the following story as an example. When I was a recruiter in the late 1990s, scanning technology was just starting to become all the rage and our company decided to invest in an expensive software-based recruiting tool. Apparently it could scan resumes for key words and basically “pop” out the perfect candidate for each open position, making the recruiter’s job almost obsolete. My initial instinct told me that it was a bad idea and of course, to stay true to my outspoken nature, I let them know how I felt. But I was accused of not embracing change and technology and was forced to go along with the implementation. In the next two years, we hired over 200 employees and every one of them came from employee referrals. Not a single hire was a result of using the technology.
So, “The Way We Will Live Next” might include more of the way we lived in the past. I remain confident that there is no replacement for the power of personal relationships. The ability for people to come together on the things we can agree on instead of being divided because of our differences, the ability to have meaningful conversations on the phone and in person instead of emails and text messages, providing personalized service, acting as a consultant for our business partners and being their biggest advocates will always be our greatest asset.
NAELB has been the epitome of an organization based on personal interaction and there is no better opportunity to nurture those long-lasting relationships than the conferences. You could probably search the internet to get the same information you will learn at the sessions, but there is nothing comparable to the face to face meetings. So, for this conference, let’s not forget the importance of human interaction and get back to the basics of our business…people. It’s “The Way We Will Live Next.” We look forward to seeing you in Memphis!
2017 NAELB Conference Chair
2017 Annual Conference Planning Committee
Chair Beth Malin, Facteon
Board Liaison Rodney Blecha, Precision Leasing, Inc.
Kristi Darlington, InstaCOVER
Ian Liddell, Accord Financial Group
Every year, the NAELB welcomes 40-50 funding source and associate members to showcase their products and/or services in the exhibit hall at the Annual Conference. Click Here to download the 2017 Sponsorship and Exhibitor Prospectus
Thursday, April 27, 2017
12:00 pm – 5:00 pm Set-Up
Friday, April 28, 2017
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Exhibit Hall Open
Saturday, April 29, 2017
9:00 am – 11:00 am Exhibit Hall Open
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm Tear Down