Industry Research

A Bold Act

Posted on March 2, 2009 by LCT Staff - Also by this author

I’ve been involved with LCT Magazine and its trade shows since 1991, so you would think they all kind of blur together by now. I must admit the years seem to quickly run together. This year’s Show, however, will always stand out, not just for its silver anniversary celebration but because of its unique timing amid some of the most challenging circumstances I’ve ever seen.

I had planned to share this topic with you for our April post-Show issue, but frankly, I just didn’t want to wait. You’ll see plenty of Show coverage and photos in next month’s issue. I actually had to jot down a few notes throughout the event for this column. For what I saw, heard, and talked about heartened me more than any bottom line number or attendance count.

We don’t need to rehash the specifics of this difficult economy, nor does it help to decry all the media hysteria and hype. We can’t really control what gets said or portrayed — only our reactions to it. And that’s why this Show emerges as such a special event.

Many of us industry diehards feared this Show would become a bit of a wake, or a giant “commiserable” convention drowned in sorrow and suds. Well, after three days of mingling among the chauffeured fl ock, you would think there are nothing but good times ahead. I observed a focus and a level of seriousness among operators and suppliers I haven’t seen in years. Our sessions were robust, with our staff reporting that audiences asked many questions and engaged with speakers. Networking events were packed, so much so that we soon realized we should have set aside larger rooms and suites. And many operators relished the simplicity of just hanging out together, whether for coffee or drinks, and getting down to some one-on-one business. Many of you helped each other out by swapping ideas, tips, and leads. Overall, I sensed a spirit of generosity.

The Show brought out the resolve and optimism in many of you, proving that this industry is full of strong wills, creative minds, and bold attitudes. Those are the marks of survivors and innovators, and this industry has plenty. Once again, our Operator of the Year Award winners and finalists underscored those points. They don’t settle for what’s worked best before; they find new ways to do their best for what lies ahead.

Perhaps the most brilliant approach I observed at the Show came from H.A. Thompson, the owner and CEO of Rose Chauffeured Transportation in Charlotte, N.C., and a 2008 LCT Operator of the Year Award winner. H.A. is known for his sunny outlook, strong radio voice, and seasoned business insights, which he has amply shared in LCT seminars and in the magazine. He recently took his efforts at promoting industry success a step further. H.A. wrote a book that I believe speaks to our present industry times: “If You Want Something You Don’t Have — You’ve Got To Do Something You’ve Never Done.” I encourage you to read this because it so succinctly puts forth what we as businesspeople need to do and why, whether we face economic prosperity or adversity. (To buy a copy: (800) 377-6912;

Finally, the quality of this industry also came through with the pointed, constructive feedback on our Show. I’ve already met with our highly capable events staff and our editors to go over what we can do better next year. Rest assured, we are listening to you. But before we get excited about the 2010 Show, get ready for LCT East on Oct. 8-9 at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. We’ll offer peak fall colors this year, and a special track of Canadian seminars for our enthusiastic and supportive industry friends to the north.

I’ll leave you with words of wisdom from H.A.: “I believe we are all potential success stories, candidates for the WOW Hall of Fame. But you won’t get there by wishing. You have to work hard, think creatively, and always remember: You can’t change the past. . . you can only change the future. Just don’t forget to have fun while you’re changing it!”

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

5 Ways To Sell Into The Luxury Travel Market

It’s not your father’s high-end market any more. These lessons apply to chauffeured transportation as well.

Trump Travel Ban Could Deter Business-Related Trips

Tech firms and multinational corporations have lashed out at the move, and some recalled employees traveling overseas.

Half Of Companies Allow TNC Use For Business Travel

A GBTA survey finds an increasing number of traveling employees using companies like Uber and Lyft.

Study Shows Jobs Rose In Taxi Industry Despite Uber

The authors believe this is the first serious look at the effects of the gig economy platforms such as Uber on jobs.

What Trump Means For Fleet-Based Businesses

Fleet expert: "If Trump eventually rolls back regulations in the automotive sector, he would likely stimulate growth."

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment



See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - March 2017 $12.95 INT'L LCT SHOW ISSUE COVER STORY: * Innovate or Die: Show To Be a Business "Disrupter" * *


Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment


Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close