The Teacher Will Appear When the Student is Ready

I have session content on the brain right now. The Partner Event is coming up in September, and I’m working with our awesome crop of speakers (past and future) to create a line up that will knock your socks off.

I’ve been looking through content ideas and wanted to throw a few your way… 

Maximize Your Business Opportunity with Your Existing Customers – You already know that your existing customers are an incredible source of repeat business. But are you delivering the most value to the customer and to your business? From tried-and-true to fresh-and-innovative, this fast-paced session will explore marketing strategies and tactics that will create loyal, reference-able customers that deliver a high ROI.

Strategies for Vertical Marketing – Vertical markets represent great opportunities for Partners. It is essential, however, to understand the ways in which you need to effectively communicate with these audiences. In this session, you’ll learn about methods that can be used to develop relevance and credibility in your marketing messages. Discussion will include list selection, message development, and offer strategies. Beyond direct marketing, we’ll also cover tradeshows, PR, and other awareness building activities.

Raising the Strategic Focus on Your Web site – Utilizing the web to grow or maximize your business sales is not just about having a Web site anymore. This session focuses on optimizing your dollars and resources to do smart marketing and revenue generation to meet your business goals. We’ll review business case studies that highlight key successes and lessons learned, and we’ll share some low budget marketing strategies that maximize your investment. Attend this session and you’ll walk away with tools and practical tips for maintaining and marketing your Web site.

Very relevant sessions, right?

I have a confession to make. These sessions have already happened. Not at last year’s event or the year before or the year before.

These sessions are from the Microsoft Great Plains Business Building Conference (BBC) from 2002. That’s right – 2002!

I don’t normally keep event materials from seven years ago at ready, but I was digging through some old boxes in my garage this past weekend and found conference guides from “back in the day.”

With The Partner Event closely mirroring the focus of Microsoft’s previously-held BBC, I was curious to check out the content from that event. What I found in the pages of that conference guide surprised me. With the exception of changed product names, the content was still relevant.

At first I thought – how can that be? Didn’t we teach these tools, techniques, and ideas well enough? Hasn’t business evolved to become more savvy?

Later, I was visiting with Bonnie Robertson about The Partner Event and this year’s content. I shared this story and my initial reaction with her. She said something that is so simple, yet profound.

“The teacher will appear when the student is ready.”

The tools, techniques, and ideas from BBC 2002 are still effective, it’s just that they haven’t been fully heard.

This example makes a pretty good case for the importance of continuous learning. You never can tell when the teacher will appear to you, and you’ll have the inspiration and determination to take your business around the corner and down a new path.

I’d like to encourage you to join us at this year’s event. I truly hope that your teacher is there this year.

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One Comment

  1. Very “Zen-like”, Jenny. But very appropriate as well – we have learning opportunities staring us in the face every day. But it’s difficult to leave the urgent (and sometimes the not-so-urgent) Inbox and telephone to take advantage of them.

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