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CMI Blog

the latest from cmi speaker managment


It’s HOT October - Juggling Calendars, Clients and Our Speakers

By Karen Harris | Oct 18, 2018 | Comments Off

When you’re in the business of putting the right speakers with the right clients in the right places with ALL the right components, there are certain times of the year where the calendar looks so packed that you begin to wonder if a few hours’ sleep a night or even a bathroom break are more suggestions than necessities. There’s a lot to keep together, and our crackerjack event coordinators really lean into the juggling act during this busiest month of all.

Here are a few thoughts to help you keep a cool head when the pressure is on:

  1. Practice self-care. I know, I know – “But there’s too much to do!” I believe in the philosophy that you can’t pour from an empty cup. Like great athletes during peak seasons, hydrate, make time for sleep, fuel up with healthy food, take your vitamins, and talk things out! What I love about our team is that they ARE a team. If someone is careening towards overwhelm, they have always got each other’s back, both in terms of workload and support. Ultimately, it’s that connection to people combined with the right tools of the trade that keeps burnout at bay.
  2. Keep AMAZING notes. The truth is you can’t remember everything, especially when you are playing beat-the-clock. So, whether you are arranging transportation, managing client expectations, pulling resources together or working with a speaker – or more likely, all of the above – don’t rely on your memory to serve you consistently. When possible, use a conference call line with the ability to record, take copious notes and organize your notes in a way that makes it the most easily understood and accessible for YOU.
  3. Systems rock. At cmi, we don’t leave a lot to chance. With some of the best speakers in the world relying on us to help them successfully bring their message to the masses (and show up at the right place at the right time) – we know what works and what doesn’t. That’s important because it’s really easy for things to fall through the cracks if you don’t have a streamlined, well-tested system in place for getting every event from start to finish.
  4. Technology tools are vital. Our business involves communication all over the globe; we couldn’t do that effectively if it weren’t for the tech tools that keep us ahead of the curve in terms ofschedules, reminders, dates, client information, transportation, and logistical hurdles. Find the tools that work best for your team and make them part of the system you can rely on.
  5. Ducks in a row. What keeps team members from hitting a wall during the busiest of times is all the action they take during the slower months. Savvy coordinators use off-months to prepare well and have their ducks in a row so that when the calendar gets crazy, they don’t feel the stress nearly as much. This includes REALLY getting to their systems, their co-workers and their clients. The more you know, the easier it is to make decisions on the fly and put the pieces of the event puzzle together faster.

It’s all hands-on deck around here during this busy time of year, and I just want to note that I am incredibly proud of the team we have. They make this juggling act of events look easy and keep their wits (and wittiness) about them while they are at it. Great job team!

If there is something we can do to help YOU juggle the events for your organization, let us know. It’s something we are very passionate about!


Learn more about Karen and the cmi team here!

Developing Future Leaders - Sam Silverstein

By cmiadmin | Jul 03, 2018 | Comments Off


Learn more about Sam Silverstein here!

Meet cmi’s Digital Marketing Director and First Queen of Fun

By Julie Escobar | Jun 15, 2018 | Comments Off

In Step With Dori Weisenberger

If you’ve spent even ten minutes with the team members at cmi, you’ll get two things right away: they are driven, smart professionals – and they like to have fun. That’s an amazing combination for any organization. For one that expertly accelerates the business growth for an elite group of speakers and their clients, I’d say it’s a big differentiator.

I recently caught up with the team’s Digital Marketing Super Creator (love their titles) Dori Weisenberger, for a quick interview on her role within the company. Here’s the inside scoop!

Q: Dori, can you first tell the readers a little about yourself and what you do for the organization?

A: Well for cmi, I do all our digital marketing. So that means video editing, weekly email blasts, image editing, social media, and website upkeep. I also periodically help with data entry and event assistance. I came to cmi from the arts world. I worked at a local museum and arts education facility.

Q: That’s awesome! As a team, you all recently decided to crown a Queen of Fun each month to choose an activity that would bring you all together...can you tell me how that decision came about?

A: It was something Karen wanted to do--inject a little more fun into our cmi life. We discussed and decided to do a fun, team-building activity on the last Friday of every month. It can be pretty informal, such as going for a walk, or something like yoga in the park. I volunteered to go first so we could see how it went. So far so good!

Q: You were the kick-off Queen! Tell us about the activity you chose!

A: I chose plogging, which is a combo of jogging and the Swedish phrase 'plocka upp,' meaning picking up garbage. It sounded like a fun trend--good for the environment and good for you! We didn't jog (I'm a terrible runner) but we did walk around for an hour picking up two big garbage bags full of trash.

Q: How cool is that? I have never even heard of it – but I love it! The environment is really important to you and to your CEO, Karen Harris - can you give us a little backstory?

A: Yes, like Karen, I grew up on a farm with two earth-loving parents who taught my siblings and I to always recycle and never litter. With climate-change trends happening everywhere in the world, we're really lucky to live in a place like Calgary that is a little more stable and seems to be sheltered from the worst of it. But we like the 'big picture' at cmi and thinking about the rest of the planet, so I'm trying to be as green as I possibly can be. Next up is figuring out a route to ride my bike to work, just like Karen!

Q: The world needs more people that are environmentally conscious! Good for you – and your team. What's one thing about yourself that people might not know?

A: I grew up playing the piano and taught beginner piano also. Music is a real passion of mine.

Q: What do you love best about what you do for cmi?

A: I really love when I create something, such as a new video clip or email blast, that sees results. That could mean it gets lots of engagement on social media, or it generated a new hold for one of our speakers. I really like being helpful to the other ladies in the office and our speakers.

You’re an integral part of the team Dori, I know. With such an incredible team dynamic, a passion for service, and a real sense of fun and comradery – it’s no wonder you all accomplish so much and connect so well with your clients. Great work!

Ready to learn more about the awesome team at cmi and what they can do for you? Click here or give them a call at 1-877-307-7403.


Do You Know the Three C’s of Innovation? - Tim Sanders

By Tim Sanders | May 01, 2018 | Comments Off

From blog posts to conference themes to magazine features, innovation is being touted as a top skill-set in this disruptive world we work in. It’s not simply a matter of locking yourself in a room and coming up with an idea, either. Innovation is defined as “when a solution successfully makes it way to market.”

For my entire career, I’ve studied innovation from several angles, and I’m here to tell you: It takes three steps to bring to life. Whether you analyze Elon Musk’s Tesla or funded contestants from the last episode of Shark Tank, they faithfully followed the 3 C’s of Innovation to the finish line... Read the full blog post here!

NEW Promo Video - Sam Silverstein

By cmiadmin | Apr 23, 2018 | Comments Off


Steps from the Stoop | Cultivating Connection - Chris Bashinelli

By Dori Pominville | Apr 03, 2018 | Comments Off


Unleash Innovation with Disruptive Collaboration - Tim Sanders

By Dori Pominville | Mar 27, 2018 | Comments Off


How to NOT sound FRUSTRATED? - Vinh Giang

By Vinh Giang | Mar 13, 2018 | Comments Off

I had to learn this one the hard way, but luckily my singing teacher taught me this little trick to remove the frustration out of my voice!


Validation Is The Key To Winning Every Argument - Ty Bennett

By Dori Pominville | Feb 07, 2018 | Comments Off

Disagreement is a part of every day life.  Whether in your personal life, business life, social life – disagreements happen.  I came across an interesting article, The Mistake You Make in Every Argument, that gave an interesting perspective on how to make the best of the often times unavoidable argument.

How do you respond when someone says something you disagree with? Do you calmly tell the person why they are mistaken, do you jump right in to defensive mode and yell or do you retreat and let them have their way?  In his article, Dr. Liane Davey makes the argument that all of those responses are wrong and the only way to get results in an argument is to first validate the other’s point of view.

The first thing you have to do is validate the other person even though you completely disagree with them!

See, when you validate the other person’s opinion you are sending the signal that you are going to solve the problem as allies instead of adversaries and who doesn’t want to work from that perspective? It will short-circuit an argument, reduce defensiveness and increase the speed in which the argument is solved.

So next time an argument ensues – stop and validate the other’s opinion.

Relevant Leadership - Ty Bennett

By Dori Pominville | Jan 23, 2018 | Comments Off