I've just returned from a five-day vacation to find the new blog is operationalsweeeeeet. And I'm enjoying the fact that today is also Valentine's Day, which is detested by many as one of the most commercialized holidays of the year. So few people know the true story behind this day. If you're interested, you can check out my editor's letter in the February issue of the mag. As for me, bring on the chocolate and roses, 'cause I'm just fine with that!
Truth is I needed a little down time after my recent change in position here at ISS. I'm stoked about all the new online initiatives I'll be launching (for example, this snappy little blog), but relinquishing control of the magazine proper was a wee bit emotional. I mean, that's my baby! But we've all got to cut the apron strings sometime, and the expansion of my self-storage horizon is long overdue.
It's a big week. Tomorrow, I'll be moderating the first ISS webinara first for me, a first for the magazine, and (I think) the first to be produced in the self-storage industry altogether. This one is a teaser for our upcoming expo in Las Vegas. Ken Piken of New York-based Piken & Associates is going to give attendees a taste of his impending seminar, "The Self-Storage Lease and Legal Protection," which will take place at Mandalay Bay on March 1. Check out the previewKen not only knows his stuff, he's a trip. As an East Coast girl, I just can't resist that accent!
As someone who also suffers from performance anxiety, I'm slightly nervous about this webinar-moderating business. Put me at a keyboard, and I'm fine. Put me on a mic, and my breakfast starts vying for a launch. At least it's not video (I shutter even to think about that).
Getting back to this idea of firsts, I have to admit this is not the first self-storage blog. There's one other of which I'm aware, and I'm proud to say it's hosted and written by one of our long-time writers/exhibitors/advertisers, Tron Jordheim, director of PhoneSmart. (By the way, if any of you know of another self-storage blog out there, please let me know. I'd be happy to post it here.)
Tron's a very creative guy, and he's been writing for Inside Self-Storage for several years now, contributing a monthly column titled "Speaking of Sales... " as well as the occasional feature story. You should check out his blog, too.
I recently discovered Tron has been asked to chair the "Affiliated Association Council" of the national Self Storage Association. In fact, he announced it in PhoneSmart's February newsletter. As chair of AAC, he'll "work with the state and international association leaders on the issues of the day." The newsletter also states, "There are many benefits to being an affiliate and no real downside that we can think of." Well, I can think of one.
But first, for those of you who don't know what this is about, let me fill you in: The national SSA has been encouraging the state associations to join its ranks by signing a formal affiliation agreement. (To date, it looks as if 18 states have joined up.) In exchange, they get a package of benefits that includes discounts and bulk pricing on products, services and education. The benefits are just fine, but the states should read the fine printby signing, they agree to forego any profit-sharing opportunities with other organizations.
For example, the Florida Self Storage Association recently became a national affiliate. As a result, it sacrificed its ability to host its fall tradeshow in conjunction with ISSsomething the group has done for the past two years and from which it made a nice little profit to pursue its long-range aims. A friend of mine (who shall remain nameless) resigned from the FSSA board out of disagreement with this decision. If this person gives the blessing, perhaps I'll post a portion of the letter he/she wrote, explaining his/her position.
In any case, I congratulate Tron on his new post. Though I still believe the affiliates should be aware of what they could be leaving on the table by signing on. More on this later.
Now go buy some over-priced candy and give it to somebody you care about. After all, if Hallmark can't inspire you, who can?