This week is all about collaboration to tell the story and create the best event. Lenny joins Charles and Paige at ILEA live and explains how he has used the relationships he has made in the events industry!
You have to tell us about you.
I’m in Las Vegas, an experimental architect, aka event producer. I have lived there for most of my adult life. I started out in the entertainment industry. I moved for what was supposed to have been a 2 week job singing and dancing. I preformed for shows on the strip for many many years, once you get to a job and you start looking to your left and looking to the right you’re now old enough to be the father of the person you sing and dance next to, move into production. That’s how my career evolved.
You’re a speaker here at ILEA Live, what are you talking about?
I partnered with a close friend and associate, he works as the current VP for Top Rink Boxing, together we partnered for many many years. We produced everything from hotel openings, to show openings, Lady Gaga, Janet Jackson, what we were speaking about was those entertainment activations and how you partner with sponsors and suppliers to deliver and get the messaging out there. It’s always in the story, depending what the story is. It’s a marketing effort to get it out there, you want to sell tickets, at the same time its a public relations activity, you want to stay on point with messaging for that particular hotel or producer. That’s what our conversation was about today.
When you put these things together and producing an event, tell me about the essential elements.
Money. A lot of elements are involved. Budgets are always nice to have. Take best practices and ideas and partner with the people you meet.
Tell me about when you are looking for great partners.
You have to have the basis of a relationship. Whether you met them somewhere before, been an admirer of their work, you reach out and begin to have those conversations and see if it’s going to be the correct fit. Not everyone is going to be the correct or right fit for a project, it’s the scaleability for that particular supplier. There are a number of great A/V providers, but they may not be scalable, you have to make a judgement call.
How would a young professional start a successful career in the events industry?
I work for a school in Las Vegas International school of Hospitality, specializing in certificate programs. Our students are not ready or they are not cut out for a 4 year degree program, yet they still want to be in the hospitality industry. They can come or do it online and learn about those particular disciplines. The certificate then gives them those baseline skills to prepare them to go out for interviews. The challenge for some of the young folks is having some applicable skills that they can enter with. Everybody wants to do it and has the passion, but you have to have something that’s actionable. Looking at those types of opportunities. Or come to a special event conference and taking those educational classes and core curriculum where you can learn from professionals working in the industry.
Take someone starting out who doesn’t know what part they want to be involved in, what should they do?
Stay off my turf. For someone to figure out what their calling is, they have to get engaged. There are not any hard and fast rules, it’s a matter of going out there and doing it, and saying it’s a fit I enjoy, or going a different direction.
Enlighten us on how you do great storytelling at an event?
It’s important to understand the project, what’s the story there. Who is the customer, who is the client? There are certain types of stories, The Who am I story. There’s the why am I here stories. The other types of stories are what I call the teaching stories. You’re always going to fit in a certain type of story and based on that you are going to use whatever tools are at your disposal.
Twitter:The Meeting Minds