Sadly, I won't be attending NADA this year due to fiscal restraint at Kbb. This will be the first time in 5 years, I won't have sore feet from standing flat footed at our booth for what alway seemed like a week. And I'd be lying if I said I wasn't going to miss that feeling. ;) I'm sure there will be many more companies doing the same and I wanted to get a quick blog off before those who were attending left for the airport.
If you are lucky enough to attend this year's meetings, don't take one minute for granted. Walk around each booth and shake hands with everybody you can. Realize how special our industry is, in arguably its bleakest time. Recognize the talent and dilligence of the people you see and embrace the time together. Hand out business cards and email addresses like it's your last NADA. It just might be.
Try and learn something about every company who has a booth. Whether you are a Dealer or a Vendor, learn from one another. Ask questions, listen to speeches and conversations. Engage anyone and everyone. Network with someone you'd never consider networking with before. If you are a vendor, make sure you visit your staunchest competitors booths and ask questions and maybe even offer solutions. Or maybe take note your competitors aren't even there? Listen to and respect the various opinions and thoughts about what ails the industry. Exchange ideas with strangers and clients alike.
Why? Because we are all in this together. And the quickest way out of a Herculean struggle is collaboration. Once we are able to better understand the problems collectively, solutions usually aren't far behind. And being a genuinely nice person isn't hard. In times like these, a large network of friends is not to be underestimated.
Please travel safe and enjoy the show. And remember to take pictures to post back on this blog in a couple of weeks. It will be a great way for those of us unable to attend to experience some "Good Times".