IPI Isn’t Over Just Yet….

As the parking industry left the sweltering streets of Las Vegas, the buzz around another successful IPI Conference continued back at Passport headquarters in Charlotte, N.C.

We were honored by several major accomplishments:

Our Chief Business Development Officer, Khristian Gutierrez, gave an engaging presentation on the psychology of mobile payments.

We won 2nd Place in “Best in Show” for our booth at IPI and hope that everyone had a great time playing on the Passport Roulette Table.

A packed house at our client appreciation event. The best feeling in the world is knowing you have a supportive client-base that acknowledges and shares operational benefits achieved through the services we provide.

We also brought back some important knowledge from IPI. Below are several key takeaways from Las Vegas:

1. Face time is the original FaceTime

Today, it is commonplace to hop on an email thread, text a friend, or jump on a video call to discuss business. Time zones and distances are relatively non-existent. As Thomas Friedman wrote, the world is flat.

Yet, despite the strides made in connecting humans across vast distances, there is no replacement for being together in one place. The time spent with clients…talking, sharing stories, and enjoying the Vegas scene together cannot be duplicated with emails and phone calls.

We love our partners, current and prospective. We enjoy the opportunity to learn more about them and build greater relationships. The technology is ever evolving, but the value gained from working together is incalculable.

You can say we are in the technology business. We like to think we are in the partnership business.

2. Technology Is Ever Present

Even though good ol’ fashioned handshakes are better than receiving a text, technology is now at the forefront of the parking industry. Operators and vendors alike are embracing innovations and advancements to improve processes for their parking customers. Mobile payments were the talk of the show. In just a few years, this technology has gone from “an added convenience” to “core” and “central” to a revamped parking program. It is truly exciting to see the landscape change and the energy that has been injected into our industry.

3. ABL: Always Be Learning

Grammar aside, this twist on a classic phrase from sales culture, ABC, or “always be closing”, is a critical takeaway from IPI.

Conferences and trade shows are prime time sales opportunities, but they are also prime opportunities to expand our knowledge base and learn. Classes and presentations shed valuable insight on best practices, new innovations, and allows everyone to sharpen their skills and work towards delivering a better experience for the end user.

That coffee with a partner or potential partner, where folks are speaking their mind and sharing their visions for their organizations are arguably the best places to learn. The opportunity to cut through the “marketing” and candidly speak and brainstorm with company leadership are some of the best ways to continue to innovate and push the market forward.

The parking industry is a vast, complex arena and bridging information from different perspectives improves our overall ability in the space.

That puts a wrap on IPI 2015…we can’t wait to see everyone at the next show!