The ABCs of TSTS

I recently returned from my second TS Tech Summit, where I was both an attendee and a speaker. Here are the event highlights from A to Z!

  1. Attendance: With around 180 attendees, the size of this year’s TS Tech Summit was perfect. I never ran out of new people to meet, but also enjoyed seeing familiar faces throughout the day.  
  2. Business Cards: Because we used Poken, I didn’t have to carry around a pile of my business cards or worry about losing anyone else’s contact information.
  3. Cool River: The steak sandwiches served during Taste of Irving were delightful!
  4. DFW Airport Transportation: The event organizers provided transportation from the airport to the hotel for out-of-town speakers and sponsors, which cut down on travel stress for sure. 
  5. EventMobi: This company created a seamless and easy-to-use event app that really elevated the conference.
  6. i Fratelli: Another company featured during Taste of Irving offered tasty pasta and lasagna options!
  7. Gatehouse Grapevine: During the day we learned about, and donated to, this mission benefiting women and children as a CSR component of the event.
  8. Happy Hour (FastBar): Sponsored by Tiger Oak Media, the end of the day concluded with a few drinks and a chance to try out FastBar, a payment system for events using wearable technology.
  9. Irving Convention Center: The event space at the convention center was a great size and the lunch was as delicious and it was beautifully presented.
  10. JSAV: Because I was a presenter, I worked closely with the JSAV staff and they could not have been friendlier or more helpful.
  11. Keynote Speaker, Grady Lee: This was my second time seeing Grady Lee speak on changing the world one meeting at a time, and I was not disappointed. He presented his keynote during the lunch session and really helped us all focus on corporate social responsibility.
  12. Lunch Wi-Fi Panel Discussion: Before Grady Lee, we attendees were treated to a panel discussion focusing on the inside scoop on Wi-Fi, led by some major leaders in the industry.
  13. MPI D/FW: Co-Sponsor of the event
  14. Networking: Between the happy hour, lunch session, registration and breaks between workshops there was plenty of time to meet other attendees and/or network with contacts you already knew.
  15. One Day: On paper it looks like the TS Tech Summit packs a lot of activities into one day, and that’s true. But as an attendee and a speaker, I never felt rushed or stressed. While there is a lot planned for one day, the schedule is smartly spaced out and the pace of the day mixes downtime and activities well.
  16. Poken: Besides being able to swap information, having Poken at the event provided a fun gamification element. There was a contest hosted through the wearable technology with a watch prize for the most active attendee. This was a lot of attendees’ first time using Poken and people really enjoyed the device.
  17. Questions from the Audience: During many of the day’s sessions, the audience showed they were actively participating by asking very intelligent questions. It was great to see attendees so captivated by the speakers.
  18. Registration: The event organizers had sent out emails prior to the event asking for attendees’ information, which was then preloaded onto Poken and used to make nametags in advance. This led to a very seamless and easy registration process.   
  19. Shark Tank: One of the last events of the day was a Shark Tank-style completion for new startups in the meetings and events industry. We were able to learn about four new companies in a very fun and interactive way.
  20. Trade Show: TS Tech Summit always includes a trade show element, with time to explore the booths in the afternoon. There is always a great mix of exhibitors without having too many booths that attendees are overwhelmed and maybe don’t make it to each one.  
  21. unrefined bakery: These gluten-free (and more) sweet treats were a huge hit during Taste of Irving.
  22. Las Vegas: The next TS Tech Summit will take place April 20-22, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
  23. Wearable Technology: I was able to sit in on the workshop lead by the CRO & Co-Founder of FastBar and learned all about the future of wearables. (Read that article here.)
  24. Imagine Xhibits: Co-Sponsor of the event
  25. Year 5: This was the fifth TS Tech Summit! While each conference is different, they continue to be a staple event in the industry and a great place to learn about the future of technology.
  26. I caught my zzzzz’s at the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center. A 20-minute cab ride from the Irving Convention Center, this hotel was a very comfortable and convenient place to unwind after the conference and reflect on what a great day I had. 

Most of us have only watched the Winter Games from afar, so getting a taste of where the world’s best athletes compete and train is a truly special experience for groups.

 

Three top accoutrements dress up drinks.

 

In light of current events and the changing industry, the association for special event planners changes its name.