Well, we just wrapped up our first-ever Leadership Summit, which was a special event for our highest-achieving Stampin’ Up! demonstrators, and I have to say that it exceeded my expectations. I thought it was a fabulous event.
We met for two days, and we had wonderful presentations from all the speakers, great dialogue (on occasion it was a little intense, but there’s nothing wrong with that—we asked for openness and honesty), and valuable interaction with a group of very influential demonstrators. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute, and I think we gained insight that will be very valuable as we move forward.
This event was different from our other Stampin’ Up! events. We intentionally kept it fairly small (about 120 demonstrators were invited, and almost 80 attended) so that we could have discussions where everyone could participate.
We also asked everyone to sign nondisclosure agreements, which means they promised to keep the information shared at this event confidential. We value our relationship with every demonstrator—and I mean that—and we are trying to work together as partners with our demonstrators more than ever before. We believe we took a significant step toward that with this meeting, where we discussed several very confidential topics, and I think those who were there appreciated our vote of trust.
We also kept the summit simple, without most of the fancy frills (decorations, stage, fancy presentations, music, etc.) that occurs at most of our other events. There were no swaps (gasp!) and no Make & Takes, although we did do a Make & Share, which were baby albums that we donated to a local nonprofit organization that takes care of young mothers.
There were also not a lot of gifts, although Pam Morgan (Stampin’ Up!’s vice president of Demonstrator Development) and I (along with a couple of other friends) spent many, MANY hours hand-stamping a Live with Passion journal and Kind Works bookmark for every participant. While they were quite time-consuming, they were certainly gifts from the heart, and I enjoyed the time I spent on them—as well as the hours of visiting while we stamped.
And tonight at dinner we were talking, and a couple demonstrators mentioned that they wanted to go to Dear Lizzie, which is just a couple of miles down the road. If you haven’t heard me mention Dear Lizzie, let me just say it’s one of my favorites stores in the whole world!
Well, before I knew it there was quite a group of demonstrators who wanted to go. We had chartered two buses to transport the demonstrators to dinner, so I ran outside and asked the two drivers which one felt the friendliest. They were both good sports, and after a few minutes of negotiations, we had worked out details for one of the buses to stick around for an extra hour to take those demonstrators who were interested to the store.
I loved sharing Dear Lizzie with some of my favorite friends. What a treat for me to see them wander around and check everything out. The boutique usually closes at 7 p.m., but I had called yesterday and mentioned that I thought a few demonstrators might be coming, and Laura (the owner, front row in the photo) said she’d stay open a little longer for us. She was surprised at the number of visitors, although I don’t think she minded the extra business at all. She told me right before we left that she was celebrating the store’s third anniversary today, and I was happy that we could be part of that special day.
So, while I’m certainly tired—the two days were packed—I feel so rejuvenated. I couldn’t have asked for it to go any better. I’m just hoping everyone else agrees. I guess we’ll have to wait and see before we start planning for next year. . .