Tenerife, Canary Islands

The comments from members immediately following our recent meeting in Tenerife indicate that this was one of our most successful meetings in the history of the network, which now spans some nine years. Our thanks, once again, go to Cargo Services of Spain for their help and their sponsorship making this meeting so great.

What is most impressive is the large number of both new and existing members who took the time to comment on how many business opportunities they gained as a result of the meeting. I am always amazed at how hard everyone works, and maybe not so surprised at how hard everyone plays.

I want to thank everybody for a great meeting. This was the first time for our new Client Services Manager, Steve Bowman, who worked hard enough to be recognized by the group with a standing ovation at the end of the meeting for his efforts! Its not easy coming up to speed as things are moving by at a good clip.

Our hotel, the Bahia Del Duque was wonderful, if not a bit location challenged. While many members didn’t make it in our Group Photo, and it might not have been one of our most graceful attempts, most of us got in the shot.

This year we had a record number of new members attending the meeting, which made for a really fun New Member Orientation session. Unfortunately, it was a bit difficult finding our location, which frustrated a few members.

Our Opening Cocktail Party was held at the hotel’s Beach Club, and it turned out to be the perfect venue, outside and during the long sunsets of the Canary Islands. It’s always great as people reconnect and new friends are welcomed into the group.

The Meeting’s Agenda had a heavy focus on Africa, with two panel sessions conducted by our African Members. The presentations were excellent and very informative, as evidenced by the healthy number of questions. Africa’s time is certainly now, with lots of interest among the membership to expand their activities in this important continent.

However, the highlight of this year’s meeting was without a doubt the Gala Dinner, that Cargo Services, and particularly Inigo Ochoa, was so instrumental in referring us to the absolute perfect location. For the first time, we left the hotel and walked to La Torre del Mirador. The location was fantastic, the entertainment and service was great, and just as the party was peaking, in came the Flamenco dancers to take things to an even higher level. It was really a fun night that, for many of us, continued on long after the event!

This year’s meeting included many first’s for our group;

• We had our first wives and guest orientation that went over well

• We had our first Project Cargo Group meeting, which generated some good ideas

• We had our first Removals Meeting

• We handed out some new awards, including the Mystery Star Award and a few others.

• AllCovered Insurance, and Bob Pearson, stepped back into our group and sponsored the Mike Miller Award which went to Inigo Ochoa.

• Richard Dexter of Bluefreight, Australia, helped us all appreciate the amazing accomplishment of helping the FOLLOW THAT FIRE ENGINE project succeed around the world. Richard played the key role is helping Globalink help this audacious group of young folks from England, drive their Fire Truck around the World and raise money for cancer charities. All of us who touched it, were very touched by it. Globalink, made a cash contribution on behalf of all the members to the Charity. Many of the members involved also contributed money and time.

• We introduced the Globalink Sales Program, which was well received.

• We had a chance to clarify to the group that our network has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to sexual harassment or inappropriate behavior by any member at any of our functions.

We are in the process of getting the Globalink Sales Program up and running. What we notice is that members are often to busy to contact new members, or to even follow up and network with existing members. We see members missing marketing opportunities both to the network and to the industry at large. By spreading our expense over the program, Globalink is offering members a very low cost “outsourced” sales program designed to contact new members, maximize marketing opportunities and look for opportunities with existing members.

The Globalink Sales Program should especially be a serious consideration for any members where English is not the native language. Many times members from countries in this case miss out on networking opportunities, simply because of language or cultural differences. The Globalink Sales Program is an ideal assist in these cases.

The Meeting Surveys track to our impression that this was a very successful meeting. Both the Hotel and the Overall Impression of the Meeting ranked in the high 8’s low 9’s (on a 10 high scale, putting the meeting in par with our other meetings in terms of perception of value. Social events received the highest overall ranking at 9.2, again which tracks to a lot of fun. One on One meetings were also ranked very high. It’s difficult to please everyone with presentations, and these generally get our lowest rankings. However this year, the presentations were ranked higher than most years, at 7.9, indicating we hit the mark most of the time.

We will be following up in the coming weeks with a number of initiatives and ideas from the meeting. It always takes time to catch up with everything when we get back. We learned a number of things at this meeting, and next year all of you will have a map of the hotel before arriving! Several members suggested moving the Gala Dinner to the last night, and we will put this under consideration. A number of members want more One on One Slots and we will look to accommodate this going forward. And, while most everyone liked this hotel, I think we learned a lesson in terms of Resort/Family Hotels versus more of a Business Hotel. It’s a fine line given we want to mix business with pleasure and a small vacation but we’ll take a harder look at layouts in the future.

Thank all of you for your participation, support and friendship. We look forward to 2012!


Bill Siemens
The Globalink Network