Back to School or Too Cool for School?

By: Shelly Sobol

Our office has a wonderful mix of staff. We have employees that are currently enrolled through Florida State University, working towards additional degrees. There are also staff members currently shipping their youngsters and teenagers off to school the past few weeks. And if you’re like me, caught in between those milestones, then you’re whizzing past traffic and long lines avoiding the college students coming back to Tallahassee.

But if you don’t need new class items (by the way mom, if you’re reading this- I’d totally love this solar power backpack) and you’re not buying them for your little ones… how do you get excited about this time of year? For students, back to school ushers in a sense of excitement with the idea of something new is around the corner: new friends, new wardrobe, new technology, the works! How do we transfer that feeling to some who only view this time of year as 3rd and 4th quarter? Moreso, how do we get them pumped so that we can prepare for 2016? Continue reading “Back to School or Too Cool for School?”

Tricks for Microsoft Excel

By: Deborah Mandel

I love Microsoft Office products, and one of my favorites is Microsoft Excel. For the general user, it is easy enough to figure out and allows you to view and sort data, create simple formulas, format cells, and more. For the advanced user, there are over 400 functions and formulas to help you do advanced calculations, programming and even more that is well beyond me.

For the most part, I consider myself a general user. I’m using Excel typically for work purposes and a little for personal use. Each time I use Excel I learn something new about its capabilities and I’ll tell you, I love it!

Here are a few tricks that I wanted to share: Continue reading “Tricks for Microsoft Excel”

Tallahassee – An Association Haven

By: Beth Evarts

Tallahassee is the capital of the State of Florida.  Tallahassee is the 126th largest city in the United States.  Tallahassee is known for rolling hills, oak-canopied roads, plantation homes, and genuine Southern hospitality. It also is home to Florida State University, Florida A&M University and, of course, Florida’s Legislature. Continue reading “Tallahassee – An Association Haven”

Association Meeting Planners – It’s a Sellers’ Market Out There : 2015 Update

By: Bennett Napier, CAE

I recently attended an event cohosted by the American Society of Association Executives, and the AMC Institute, AMCs Engaged is a pre event held in conjunction with the ASAE Annual Meeting.

One of the most important sessions was led by Michael Dominguez, CHSE, Senior Vice President and Chief Sales Officer for MGM Resorts International. His session was sponsored by ALHI Hotels and Resorts.

Mr. Dominguez shared a comprehensive update of both the global and North American meeting market trends. Most of the data source comes from

For anyone that plans association or corporate meetings, there were some startling data points to consider as you plan future events: Continue reading “Association Meeting Planners – It’s a Sellers’ Market Out There : 2015 Update”

Being the New Guy: The Road to Success in Your First 90 Days

By: Meghan Brasher

As most everyone can relate, starting a new job can bring on a whirlwind of emotions-excitement, empowerment, nervousness, and for some maybe even a little bit of nausea. And like most, everyone finds themselves panicking a little about how this new endeavor is going to go: Am I dressed appropriately? Are the employees going to like me? How am I going to establish myself? Did I remember to brush my teeth? Although everyone handles their new start differently, here are some tips and tricks proven to get you through those agonizing, yet very important, first 90 days. Continue reading “Being the New Guy: The Road to Success in Your First 90 Days”

Sales Statistics You Can’t Miss

By: Maureen Turner

I recently attended the Florida Society of Association Executives ( annual convention. I almost didn’t go. It was too far, would cost too much, etc. Yes, I made every excuse not to attend. However, if you have never been a part of FSAE, I encourage you to try it. There really is something for everyone.

I particularly enjoyed the closing keynote speaker, Delatorro McNeal, II, MS, CSP, who was sponsored by Partners ( He covered a variety of topics including work life balance, but the biggest take away for me was his information on sales. Continue reading “Sales Statistics You Can’t Miss”

Treasure Hunting

By: Amy Bean Napier

In Florida, as in most states, the state holds and tracks unclaimed property for both individuals and businesses, including associations.  In addition to money and securities, unclaimed property includes tangible property such as watches, jewelry, coins, currency, stamps, historical items and other miscellaneous articles from abandoned safe deposit boxes.  Based on specific state law, this unclaimed property is held until it’s claimed by its legal and rightful owner.

Recently one of the associations that I work with received a letter from an attorney’s office stating that the State of Florida was in ownership of an uncashed check for $250 from 2004.  And for only $50, they would claim the funds on our behalf and send us the leftover $200.  States regulate the percentage that these types of companies can charge for these services. In Florida it’s 20% or up to a maximum of $1,000 per account but these limits may be exceeded if the contract you sign contains a full disclosure statement.

Instead of losing $50 and letting that locater company have all the fun, I decided to claim the funds on the behalf of the association.  Ahoy matey, let’s go on a treasure hunt! Continue reading “Treasure Hunting”