The Mega IHRSA Post-Show Blog

Executive Editor Stuart Goldman looks back at the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association conference and trade show in Las Vegas.

After hearing two of the main keynote speakers at the show, I've decided I'm going to create my own speaking tour since I've figured out the secret formula.

In fact, you can be a public speaker, too. Anyone, even someone who is unemployed and living off of the earnings from a malpractice lawsuit can still be a successful speaker using these three key examples: Apple. Southwest Airlines. Harley-Davidson.

You mention those three companies in any presentation at any business convention, and you'll be set for life. There will not be enough days on the calendar to fill your speaking engagement schedule.

Just about every business-related speaker I've heard recently uses those three companies at some point in their presentation. I even joked about it with Pam Kufahl while we were sitting together for the Chip Conley presentation. Every step of the way, Apple (ding!), Southwest Airlines (ding!) and Harley-Davidson (ding!) was duly noted. Southwest Airlines employees would feel their job is a calling more than a career or a job, said Conley, the founder of Joie de Vivre Hotels.

I discussed my theory the next day with Sara Kooperman, CEO of SCW Fitness Education and Les Mills Midwest (and one of the few people who get to call me "Stu.") As we were about to see the Friday speaker, Peter Sheahan, founder and CEO of ChangeLabs in Australia (and author of "FL!P"), I told Sara something like, "All these speakers use the same companies: Apple, Southwest and Harley-Davidson. You watch."

Well, right before Sheahan came out on stage, the man introducing him said Sheahan had done work with Harley-Davidson. That was a good sign, but it really didn't come during the presentation, so it only sort of counted.

A few minutes into the address, here comes the Southwest Airlines example. Boom! I'm lovin' it. Sara is beside herself. She can't get over the fact that I'm right. I'm still lovin' it.

Another few minutes pass, and boom! The Apple example! By now, Sara is punching me in the leg, physically injuring me. I don't feel the pain.

So at this point, all three companies were mentioned, but again, the Harley-Davidson example was only a sort-of example. There were only two minutes left to go in the presentation. Nerves were rattled. And then suddenly, Sheahan talked about how UFC fights have a sponsor right in the middle of the mat during their televised bouts. And that sponsor is…Harley-Davidson!

Yes! Nailed all three! I did a victory dance in the chair. Sara was done speaking to me at this point.

This was Babe Ruth calling his shot at Wrigley Field. This was Jordan hitting the game-winner against the Jazz. This was Jon Gruden running down the sidelines in the Super Bowl, punching his fist in the air as he watches an interception return for a touchdown.

Boom! Boom! Boom! Apple, Southwest, Harley-Davidson. The trifecta! We have a winner! No more calls, please. I rest my case, your honor. Thank you, and good night.

Discuss this Blog Entry 1

Sara Kooperman, CEO, SCW Fitness Ed (not verified)
on Apr 6, 2013

Well, Stu (and I do mean Stu) - boom, boom, boom! To dispel any myths - you cried like a little girl when I hit you in the leg. And your victory dance was no where near as exciting as seeing Beto live on-stage at the Zumba booth.
As always, a pleasure to see you at this years IHRSA!

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