Problem Solver - August 2011
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Find New Ideas for Your Facility

When you're looking for new ideas and innovations to adopt at your facility, there can be nothing better than getting ideas from outside the box. Trade shows and conferences offer a great way to unearth new options. When you head to events—especially events that take you beyond the usual market—you'll experience new ideas from suppliers and manufacturers, industry experts and peers whose experience might spark a new approach for your own facility.

When you really want to come up with something new, consider heading to a European show for a change of pace.

Q: What's the value in going to Europe for a conference?

A: Aside from the enjoyment of experiencing new things, new people and new places, you will also glean information that can't always be found at conferences within the United States. With a multicultural audience, this type of conference might give you a chance to be exposed to new ideas that have not yet reached this continent.

Every two years in Cologne, Germany, a conference for municipal leaders, facility managers, architects and engineers, operators of sports, pool and leisure facilities, landscapers, and operators of hotels, gyms and campgrounds brings together a multinational, multicultural audience. You'll find an exhibit hall with products aimed for sports facilities, public pools, playgrounds and urban design—not to mention service providers such as architects and project planners.

Q: What should I do to prepare for this kind of conference?

A: Take some time to look through the exhibitor listing on the Web site and make a plan of who you'd like to visit before you leave for the show. Contact the companies to set up appointments. European exhibitors generally take time to schedule appointments and have sit-down meetings in the booth with refreshments.

Be sure to leave some room in your schedule. You might learn something new or find an exhibitor who was not part of your original plan.

Also check out the various programs and sessions that will be taking place. You will get new information from experts across the globe. You might even get a brilliant new idea to bring back to your own facility.


Koelnmesse Inc.: 773-326-9929