Just back from a visit to the latest trading expo and I have some observations not necessarily in any order of importance.
1. Scrubbers are in – content is out. There were no shortage of stands for people I had never heard of whose main way of attracting attention was to have tarts with big busts and no brains handing out things.
2. In the olden days most stands used to be occupied by brokers handing out research, offering portfolio reviews and the like. Whilst that is not really my thing it was at least content driven. Most stands nowadays seem to be FX providers each one staffed by pimply faced twats who think they know something when in actual fact they know sweet FA.
3. Size was way down – forget the hype the days of big expo’s is over. They are victims of sector destruction like so many other industries. Why troll around a crowded expo having Arthur Daley like street vendors trying to entice you into their stands when you can do it all from home.
4. Professional presentation has gone the way of the Dodo – whilst dawdling through the expo I came a across a guy giving a presentation in jeans pulled up over his ample gut whilst wearing a form fitting polyester t-shirt. I didnt get the name of his topic but I am guessing it was how to use your man boobs for success. And don’t get me started on the fundamental peanuts.
5. Same old….same old. In 1988 I gave a talk to a semi professional group on breakout systems which is basically what I use. In 2009 I gave the same talk to same people and guess what…20 years later the same people were in the front row. This is my experience of expo’s – it is the same sad faces going year after year looking for some form of magical tool to lift them out of their shitty lives. I am wondering if there is some sort of badge given to people who have been to every expo – a bit like the Red Cross give blood donors.
6. Caught up with some mentorees which is always good and if it hadn’t been for that it would have been a complete waste of half a day.