At Shiftwork Solutions, we are frequently invited to be guest speakers at conventions. This might mean giving a presentation about industry-specific scheduling challenges or a general presentation about sleep/alertness and safety in the workplace.
We are happy to accommodate these requests with just a few minor conditions. First of all, we don’t use these as sales visits. We do not discuss our process or prices during the presentation. While we are happy to talk about ourselves off-line, we prefer to stick to the prearranged topic while making our speech.
We have long ago recognized two things: (1) If people don’t need help with their shift-work situation, we are not going to create that need with a high-pressure sales pitch and (2) If people know about us, then they know where to find us if they ever need us.
We view public speaking appearances as a long-term marketing strategy. Our expertise inevitably comes out during the presentation. People see that and remember us as experts in our field. If some weeks, months or even years later, they have a need for our services, they know how to get in touch.
Aside from no direct sales pitch, there are two other conditions for engaging us to speak publicly about shift work and/or related issues: (1) The audience must be appropriate. This means it must be made up of people that are in some way linked to operations with large populations of shift workers. In other words, we don’t want to make a presentation to coffee shop owners or bankers. Manufacturing, mining and food industries are more typical of our intended audiences. (2) While we don’t charge a fee for our presentations, we do ask that the sponsor pay for all travel expenses.
Here are some typical topics we have been asked to talk about:
- The history of shiftwork
- The impact of shiftwork on families
- Safety and shiftwork schedules
- How to design the perfect shift schedule
- Trends in shiftwork scheduling
- Change Management
Of course, if there is another topic you would like to discuss, feel free to contact us and let’s see if we have something to offer. I (Jim Dillingham) can be reached at (415) 265-1621 or email me at Jim@shift-work.com.
Here is a typical comment from a recent speaking engagement:
We met at the AF&PA Employee Relations Committee meeting in North Charleston, SC, earlier this month. Our group was very impressed with your presentation according to the feedback I received. As a long-time member of the Program Committee for our group, I can assure you that there has never been a better presentation.
From the beginning, your presentation grabbed my attention, principally due to your approach to 24/7 scheduling history for the last 100 years. As you took us through the decades showing the changes, I saw how the progress of change built upon the past and ultimately led to the study of circadian rhythms and night work. You ended with a schedule that has a profound positive effect on the health and safety of workers and is achievable with unions and other groups of employees in resistance to any changes, even positive ones. Please keep presenting and converting industrial leaders to your views of scheduling. We desperately need it.