August 5, 2012
I had the pleasure of working as a Chamber/CVB volunteer for the recent Airstream Convention and BMW Motorcycle Rally at the Missouri State Fairgrounds. Connie Smith and Carolyn Crooker should be commended for their efforts at bringing these (and other) events to our community. They have an infectious enthusiasm for promoting Sedalia and are always coming up with great ideas.
After leaving my shift at these events, sometimes I would forget to take my name tag off while running errands in town. This gave me an opportunity to see how our guests were treated, since many of the people I came in contact with assumed I was one of them.
People bent over backwards to make sure I was taken care of.
From store clerks in Bings, Woods or Walmart to counter salespeople at Western Extralite, O’Reilly Auto Parts or Mandy’s Frozen Delight, I was greeted with smiles and extra-helpful service. I tried explaining that I wasn’t really a visitor the first few times I heard, “We appreciate you coming to our town.” But, I could tell that these folks actually felt good about being able to welcome me and I didn’t want to spoil it for them. So, I just started smiling back, telling them I appreciated the hospitality, too.
When visitors leave with a good impression, our reputation goes up a few notches in the world of convention booking. That leads to more visitors and the millions of dollars they bring with them. If there’s one thing Connie and Carolyn keep preaching over and over, it’s the importance of making our visitors feel welcome. Well, from my experiences I’d say the message was received loud and clear. Well done, Sedalians!
Sedalia Chamber/CVB Board member