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IEA October 2018 Ambassador Message


  • The IEA Vision
    To be the world’s #1 leading resource for connecting member businesses.
  • The IEA Mission Statement
    To foster the growth of Executive Association businesses by connecting them to a trusted international network of contacts.

For those of you who didn’t attend, you missed a lot of great speakers and tons of valuable information!  Although, I can’t cover it all, here are some of the highlights of the conference which also coincided with the Executives Association of Charlotte’s 50th Anniversary.

Thursday morning’s featured keynote speaker was a very talented and influential speaker.  Brian Parsley who is a regular contributor for publications and broadcast media, shared his experience and knowledge on the power of influence.  He shared with us strategies to guide others to the decisions that benefit everyone.     

Thursday also featured several important topics during our round table discussions.  Topics included association member retention and growth, board service and committees, quality leads and referrals, and there was also a table discussion on international networking.    

After lunch, during our breakout sessions, we heard from Sandy Solomon and Debby Millhouse on how to master the art of networking.  Sandy is a local award winning Financial Advisor in the Charlotte area who built his own business through networking and referrals.  Debby is CEO of CEO Inc., the nationally known Charlotte based recruiting and staffing firm.

John Putnam was also there Thursday afternoon to show us how we can use our businesses to change the world.  His presentation on, “7 Benefits of Using Your Business for Impact”, took us through successful strategies for charitable planning and stewardship.   

Duane Cashin, President and CEO or Cashin Sales of Charlotte joined us on Thursday to show us how our salespeople can become our competitive advantage.  Having over 34 years of experience building sales teams, Duane knows sales systems and processes.  We will all benefit from the information he shared with us.

In the evening, many of us went to the NASCAR Hall of Fame…to fulfill our need for speed and get a little taste of moonshine.  We enjoyed dinner, drinks and a little friendly competition.  The Race Week experience took us behind the scenes at how a NASCAR team preps for race day each week.  We saw an engine dyno, practiced a pit stop, and got behind the wheel in iRacing simulators to race and determine the champion.

After Breakfast on Friday, our feature keynote speaker was Richie Parker of Optimech Solutions.  Richie was born with Bilateral Amelia, a birth defect that left him with unformed limbs. That was an obstacle that did not stop Richie.  He found creative solutions that allowed him to live a normal and independent life. His talk about overcoming fear of failure and never giving up was inspirational.

In our breakout business sessions on Friday afternoon, Ira Bass, CEO of Connect with Success, showed us just that…how to connect with success and the value of using LinkedIn.  Ira credits LinkedIn as his resource for building a network of contacts and new business opportunities.  He taught us how to do the same.

Stacy Brown Randall’s discussion on “Generating Referrals Without Asking”, shared her unique strategies that have helped hundreds of clients generate an ever increasing annual number of referrals, yes, and without asking!

Also in the mix on Friday afternoon, Ken Carlisle and David Dufault talked about exit strategies…selling your business.  Appropriately called “Race to the Checkered Flag”, Ken and David gave us a number of ways to hand off your business, make a profit from the sale, and secure your own legacy in doing so.

There were many first time conference attendees who will now become regulars.  There is great value in getting to know members from other associations and sharing ideas.  It is powerful to have a trusted network of international contacts.

Stay tuned for the announcement of the dates and location for the 2019 conference!

Lisa Woodstock
Past President, International Executives Association Board of Directors 
Seattle Executives Association