This transcript is from Episode 5 of The Savvy Event Planner Podcast
To listen to this podcast, please visit: http://SavvyEventPodcast.com/episode5
Tom: It's time for The Savvy Event Planner podcast, episode five.
Announcer: Welcome to the Savvy Event Planner podcast, where insightful tips, strategies, tactics and case studies can help inspire you to engage guests and create successful events. And now, here's your host, Tom Crowl.
Tom: Thanks for being with me today. It means a lot to me that you're spending some time listening to this because I'm excited. We've got a great show lined up for you. Last week, you may remember in episode four, we had James Songster. He works for the world's largest mouse, The Walt Disney Company, as a cast mate trainer and facilitator. If you didn't listen to that, you might want to go back because James shares his perception of how Disney creates their experiences for customers, and that leads right into what you do as an event planner – how to create that experience for your guests.
In the interview, James mentioned the five keys to customer service and one of them just smacked me square in the face, right between the eyes. It was remembering the client, remembering the person and I personally have a lot of trouble with my memory. I know a lot of people are busy. They sometimes miss names. It's how can we do that recall, how can we have that one-on-one interaction, how can we create that memory for the guest if we can't remember them?
And so what I've done is I've gone out and I've gotten hold of a guy who has been in the USA Today, he's been featured in the LA Times, he's been on The Today Show, The Doctor Steve Show, Good Day New York. I mean, he's been on TV, he's been in the newspapers. He's an incredible speaker, author and something else and I'll share with you in just a moment when I bring him on.
Before I get to our guest today, though, I do want to say thank you to everybody who has started participating in our iTunes contest. As you know, we're a brand new podcast on iTunes. They rate us by our comments and our subscribers and so everybody who's going there to leave a comment, it's greatly appreciated. It helps us rise in the rankings so others can find us and benefit from this information as well.
So, if you haven't entered the contest yet, here's all you've got to do. Go to iTunes, search for The Savvy Event Planner podcast, just click on comments and leave a comment. Before you hit the submit button, do a quick screen capture and then go show it on Twitter with the hash tag #savvyeventpodcast. That's all you have to do and you'll be entered.
I'll respond to your tweet and then we'll make sure that you're in the drawing at the end of October. We're going to draw out one name who's going to get a $50 gift certificate. You can choose whether it's going to be an iTunes gift certificate, it's going to be an Amazon gift certificate, or we'll even send you a Starbucks card. So it's totally up to you what you want to win if you win. That's all you have to do to enter and I greatly appreciate it. And you're helping us grow the audience and spread the word, so I thank you.
Now, let's get back to the day's guest. Ladies and gentlemen, I'm online here with Brad Zupp. Brad, you are a memory athlete.
Brad: That's right.
Tom: When I think memory, I'm thinking back to when I was in school and the smart kids. You know, they were the nerds or the geniuses. What is a memory athlete? That kind of combines two things that I've never put together.
Brad: It's probably a term that no one's ever heard before. As a memory athlete, I go to competitions around the world and test my memory against other people, to see who can remember the most information presented to us right then, in the fastest times. So, we'll memorize everything from a deck of cards as quickly as we can, to spending 15 minutes memorizing people's names and faces.
And each event is tested a little bit differently, but they're all timed and we're always given fresh data. So, it's not coming to an event and saying okay who knows the most digits of pi, that someone could just obsess over and spend all their time and memorize. It's always here are pages and pages of people's pictures and their first names and their last names. You have 15 minutes to memorize as many as you possibly can, including spelling, go. Then we spend 15 minutes memorizing, the pages are taken away, we're given new pages with the same pictures and without the names on them and in different order, so you can't just memorize the names in order, and then we have to match say that woman, I think her name was Lynn Kemp, okay and we have to remember that Lynn is spelled with two Ns and Kemp is with an E and no E at the end.
So that's what we do. I compete internationally with other people who have the same passion to improve their ability to remember things.
Tom: How long does that memory last?
Brad: Well, at the competition side, I need to be able to forget relatively quickly. So that, say, memorizing a deck of cards, I don't need to memorize a deck of cards in 60 seconds, which is my kind of average time, and then remember that for the next year. I need to forget that so I can memorize more cards in the training next day.
With what people do in the real world, which is the other side of what I do, I'm also a memory improvement expert, I help people remember things for the long term and bridge the gap between when we first learn something and when it's in our long term memory, because we all know how to remember well. Think of all the people you can name. All the movie stars, you see a picture of them in the newspaper or online and you know their name. All the people you went to school with that you see them, they look a little bit old but you go, “Benjamin, is that you?” We know how to remember. It's just that gap between when we first meet someone and when we know who they are that I help with.
And for that type of thing, it's almost a completely different sport, if you will, to remember someone's name for the long term or to remember that my wife prefers her spaghetti sauce with less oregano, or whatever. To remember those things long term is different than the memory sport that I do. But what I found is the memory training, the memory sport, just the idea of exercising my memory, helps with the longer term. It helps me remember things better overall.
Tom: Okay. You've touched upon something that is the exact reason I brought you in here today. Our audience are event planners, people who work for their company. They've got a lot of things on their plate. And the last episode, I was talking with James Songster. I don't know if you know James. He's out of Florida. He's a facilitator for Disney and James talked about the five pillars of customer service, the last one of which was ‘remember me'.
So that's why I brought you on here because, personally, I have a horrible memory. Somebody will say their name and it will go in one ear and out the other, even though I'm trying to concentrate on remembering that person. And I realized that as event planners, sometimes people are just dealing with the people in their company but, other times, they're dealing with clients, people they don't see often and it's important to not only remember that name but remember things about that person so that you can create an experience for them and, when they come back again, you can welcome them and make them feel like they've never left, just really build that relationship.
So this happens not just in event planning, but networking. I mean, we're dealing with business people that are listening. They're going to be networking, they're going to have other areas of their life where they need this ability, and we all have different levels of that ability. Mine is horrible but share with us some tips, if you can, on how we can better capture the name and capture the experience and pull it into a long term memory. That's a lot of stuff that I'm asking of you but I'm hoping you'll share that with us today.
Brad: Sure, that's what I do in my presentations and coaching is I help people with this. And you're right, even when we're trying to remember a name, sometimes it's hard and we all need this ability. And really, when you think about it, anybody does but especially those of us in business, whether we're in event planning or even if you run a restaurant or a resort, think about the customer service level because, at some point, we need something to differentiate ourselves or our businesses. At a certain point, all five star resorts or five star restaurants or five star hotels or five star customer service, once you have really good customer service, then you need to compete in that niche of how am I different from the other really good places or the really good people? And you need a little bit of an edge. One way to have that edge, I think, is to have a better memory and, well, first, the good news. As you know, anything that we work on consistently, we can improve.
Tom: You mean I have to work on this.
Brad: We have to work on it but it can be fun. It can even be enjoyable but to me with memory, the first step is just setting the intention of I'd like to get better at this. I look at it the same as physical fitness. I would like to be a little bit more fit and then the world opens up because you start thinking well, let me take the stairs as opposed to the elevator or let me walk to the corner and back today as a first step.
Same with memory, when we say, “You know what? I have a horrible memory for names. I want to get better at this.” That kind of turns the corner from just accepting our fate of, “Well, I guess just that's the way it goes,” to going, “You know what? This is what I'm working on this month or this year or this decade. I'm going to get better at this. It's a weakness and I want to improve.” And just that, I feel, opens the door to a lot.
As far as tips go, well there's a short version and a long version with names, specifically. Let me go back to the three steps to remembering anything, and I have a white paper PDF about this if anybody wants to read it. Basically, we have to go up three stairs to get to the top landing, which is being able to remember. Just real quickly, first we have to get the information, then we have to save it and then we have to recall it to be able to remember.
So a lot of times people say, “Well, I have a horrible memory,” and that's all encompassing and you need to kind of narrow it down to, “I have a bad memory in this spot. How can I fix this spot?” So my first instinct with people is just ask them, “Where do you think you have the most problem?” Do you not hear the name or, if you're introduced to someone and 15 seconds later, you don't remember their name, that's probably the getting the information, the first step.
If two minutes after meeting them you realize, “Oh no, I had their name and now I don't have it any more,” that's probably a saving the information problem, that step. And if, on your way out of the networking event or the client meeting, you turn around to say thanks, Tom, I enjoyed meeting you and you go, “Thanks, buddy, I enjoyed meeting you,” because you no longer remember Tom's name, that's probably a recall issue because it happens at a different time.
Brad: So really the first thing to do is to do some self-assessment and say where am I going wrong? With most people, they go wrong at the first step – getting the information, because we're distracted and we're out of practice. And that's why I say setting the intention is good because when you go into a networking event thinking, “I've had a bad memory for names and faces in the past. I tend to forget people as soon as I meet them. I'm going to try things a little bit differently tonight.” That kind of brings it into the forefront of your attention and you will get a little better. Now you won't go from, you know, shooting 120 at the golf course to being a scratch golfer that way, but just the intention of I want to get better at this will help you concentrate and you'll get more names that way.
So for getting the name, for hearing the name, I like to, in my interaction, because I got into this because I was bad at it. I wasn't one of the brilliant kids in school. I haven't been natural to remembering people's names. I got into this because I'm bad at it and I wanted to get better, so I learned everything I could, I developed some of my own techniques and I experimented. Okay, let me try this this time. Okay, that didn't work for me. Let me try this this time. Hey, that worked. So this has all been through trial and error and listening to what the scientists say but then putting it into practice and not just taking their word for it.
And my first thing when I meet someone is I know I'm going to have a conversation about their name. That's it. That's my first intention. When I meet someone, I don't talk about the weather or how good the hors d'oeuvres are or how nice their office is or boy that's a great tie. It's, “Oh Tom. Is that short for Thomas or do you like to be called Tom? You prefer Tom or your buddies call you Tommy?” We're having a conversation about your name first because that way I'm fully focused. I don't hear, “Hi, my name is Tom.” “Oh, I'm Brad,” and “Hey, aren't these hors d'oeuvres great?” and I'm like what did he say his name was? You know within five seconds, I'm already in the weeds.
So, first thing I do if someone says, “Hi, my name is Tom. What's your name?” I say, “I'm Brad. Tom. Is that short for Thomas?” or “Now how did your family decide to name you Tom? Are you named after a grandfather or an uncle or how did they choose that?” If it's an unusual name like, I don't know, Sergey, it's like “Oh, Sergey. Is your family from Russia or how did you end up with the name Sergey? And how do you spell that? Is it S-E-R-G-E-Y, is that it?” So, the conversation becomes all about their name, which, frankly, people love, and it helps me remember. No fancy techniques, this is the short version. Nothing after that just focusing the attention for 15 seconds on their name drastically increases my ability to remember someone's name.
Tom: That's a great tip right there. I love that.
Brad: Yeah, especially if it's an unusual name. Now I actually find it easier to remember unusual names than easy names. Like the first time I met my friend Nafisa, everybody around was going, “What was her name again?” and I was like, “Nafisa?” And I knew that with such an unusual name and I had to work to remember that as opposed to Jill or Lynn. So, even without using techniques, I was like, “Nafisa, Nafisa, what type of name is that? What's the background? What's the heritage? Is it N-A-F-I-S-A? Okay, and what nickname do people . . . do you have a nickname? Is it Nafi?” “No, it's Fisa.” Oh, Fisa. So okay right away we're having a 30 second conversation about her name that the other people that met her didn't have. They were like, “Hi, I'm Nafisa.” “I'm Joe,” and they're off and they're like, “I can't remember that woman's name.” Setu. Same thing. I have a friend named Setu and Setu is like that's an interesting name, can you tell me about that, and how to spell it?
So anyway, it is a great technique to use. It really breaks the ice and then it keeps the focus on them, which is nice and, from a business standpoint, after you talk about someone else for 15 seconds, 30 seconds, they generally will say, “Well, tell me about you?” and they might admit that they don't remember your name and that's a great time to say, “Don't worry. I have been horrible with names. I'm just trying to remember names better and that's why I asked you about yours.”
But even a name like Joseph or John. Let's take the easiest one, John. “Is that J-O-N or is it J-O-H-N? Is it short for Jonathan or Johnny or what did they call you growing up? I promise I won't call you Johnny boy,” you know, but it just cements it in your mind a little bit. That's the first tip I can give you. Well, second, the first one being make an effort to improve your memory and the second is just have a conversation about someone's name. Ask them how to spell it, try to spell it yourself, ask them the background or if it's an unusual name say, “I'm going to need help with that. I'm going to have to have you say that a couple of times.” If they say Nafisa really fast, say, “Can you slow that down? Is it Na-fi-sa? Okay, I've got it, and how do you spell it?”
So the next one, the next tip, aside from making sure you hear the name, is to check in with where you're having trouble. So, if your trouble is coming from the first step of getting the information, getting the name, make sure you have that conversation. If, however, the second step, you can remember the person's name during the conversation but when you walk away to go to the other side of the room to introduce yourself to someone else, you look back and realize you don't have that name any more.
Tom: We haven't been able to save it and that was I was about ready to ask you. That conversation cements the info. It doesn't save it for us?
Brad: Mm-mm. Well, it depends. It depends on where you have trouble. If you have trouble getting the information and you've gotten the name, you're all set. Many people, especially in the event planning industry, are people people. You're a people person. So, we're naturally able to remember people's names well. If what you do for a living is meet people all the time and meet new people and you love talking to people, you're probably better than average at remembering names. So, you just need a little bit of help to transition from I didn't get their name, okay now I've got it and now I know them, to have it.
If your trouble, however, is saving the information, you walk away and 30 seconds later you look back and you realize you know I had that whole conversation, this is me, I had that whole conversation about their name and I had it but now I'm seeing my new client walking across the room and the new client has her assistant with her and I don't remember the assistant's name and I should. That's a distraction. You look back and go, “Oh I forgot her name too,” and then it's just kind of a spiral. You start feeling bad.
So, if you're distracted and then you look back and you don't remember Tom's name or Nafisa's name or John's name, that's more likely a saving problem and that gets a little trickier because that's the bridge from short term to long term. And if the simple tip of having a conversation about their name doesn't work, then you need to start pulling out the big guns.
Brad: So the big guns, and this is getting into the longer version, the big guns are the keys to memory and, basically, the keys to memory involve making a picture of someone's name or remembering them with a picture. The best way that works for me with this is to think of someone else I know with the same name. So I'm talking to you, say I meet you for the first time, Tom. Okay. Who else do I know named Tom? Well, there's a neighbor up the road named Tom and I can say do you, Tom, have any similarities with the Tom who lives up the road? And maybe you do, maybe you don't. If you don't, sometimes that's enough because like this Tom doesn't look anything like my neighbor Tom. Or you can use a celebrity, Tom Cruise, and maybe I picture you, the Tom I just met, getting a high five with Tom Cruise.
Tom: That's right.
Brad: Or Tom Cruise walks over, puts his arm around you and says, “Hey, I love this guy. You've got to work with him,” and I say, “Wow, great can I take a picture of you two?” And we always create these little stories in our head while we're driving. “Oh I should have said that when they asked me this,” or “Gee, you know when I get to the grocery store, I'm going to go to that lane because that's always fast.” So we're always kind of thinking, so you can take and have just this two second little memory or mental fantasy, if you will, of Tom Cruise putting his arm around Tom and saying, “I love this guy. He's so great.”
Tom: It's not going to happen. I've got a restraining order against him.
Brad: So, especially if it can be funny like that or play that, “This guy has a restraining order against me!” As weird as you can make it, as funny, as strange, as just like shake your head and go I can't believe I'm thinking about that. Or Tom Cruise comes over and punches you, “Now stop stalking me!” That's memorable and that is another little bridge. Now that's why it's the second step though, because 10 seconds into meeting you, I don't remember your name is Tom. I can't ever picture Tom Cruise coming over and punching you.
So that's why you have to get the information, once I have the conversation about your name and I know, for me, okay I'm going to walk away and I'm going to get distracted by the hors d'oeuvres and I'm going to go, “What was his name again?” I need to have a little mental image. I can picture that.
That's my favorite because I can picture movie stars, I can picture my neighbor, I can go, oh, my neighbor has grey hair and Tom has grey hair and they're thin and, oh, okay, they both look professional. Then that's like three things already that I'm comparing and that's, again, helping my natural memory delve deeper because, really, my whole thing is we remember well already. How can we just help our minds?
We can remember thousands of people's names. Even if you think you have a horrible memory for names, you know a thousand people and you just need a few tips on how to get a little bit better at meeting the strangers and transitioning them from strangers to people you remember. So, that's one way. Taking a movie star or a friend, whatever, and creating, not just a simple one like, oh, here's Tom Cruise shaking your hand, it has to be memorable. It has to be Tom Cruise, you know, grabbing you around the shoulder and going on and on and on about what a great entertainer you are, or Tom Cruise punching you or Tom Cruise sneaking up behind you and whatever. It has to be something interesting.
So, if that doesn't work for people, though, one of the more traditional ways that memory experts always say, and I use this too. This doesn't work so well for me but– is looking at their face or their body and taking their name, translating the name into a picture, and then relating it to them. Now, an example with your name is someone might thing Tommy gun. Okay, you know the old fashioned kind of 1920s gangster movies and they have the Tommy gun?
Brad: So they might think, okay, I might picture you being a nice guy who would never bring a Tommy gun to the business networking event but there you are and you're shooting it into the air. Or you're pointing at me, you're saying, “I don't know you. Who are you, what's your name? I've got to know your name.” So, something interesting with that. With Alexander, I might think Alex to me is always, it sounds a little bit like axe to me, Alex, so whenever I picture Alex, I picture someone chopping wood, okay? So I might meet a male or female named Alex and they might be thin or heavyset, and they might be tall or short, they might be young or old, but somehow, I can picture Alex chopping wood and then later on I'll see them again and I'll think now what were they doing? Oh, they were chopping wood and chopping wood is Alex. You see how that works?
Alexander, I picture chopping the wood and taking the piece of wood and taking a little piece of sandpaper and sanding it down, and what a job that would be of taking a chopped piece of wood and sanding. I might think, wow, they're really persistent. So, that's kind of how I do it and the good news is, like I said, anything we practice, we get better at. The more you practice it, the easier it is.
So I kind of have, just from trying this and being a memory athlete, I have a bunch of images already. If I meet someone named Joseph, I think of the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat. And I picture them, if they've got a suit coat on or no suit coat or a bright tie or a plain tie, I picture they would be so much better off if they had this huge multi-color coat.
Or let's see another one, like Nafisa, I just kind of brute force remembered that. Na-fi-sa. Edith. That's kind of an old fashioned name, so if you meet someone named Edith, they're probably not going to be 21 and my father-in-law is named Ed and I'll look at oh Ed, Edith. Edith is spelled E-D-I-T-H generally and I'll think oh, this is someone of my father-in-law's era and his name is Ed. So, I'll go through that process and I'll go okay, this nice woman, she's a little bit older and I remember thinking of her with my father-in-law. Well, her name isn't Ed, Edith, that's it.
So, those are kind of the tools for that step. You have to come up with a picture. Like Steve, if I see someone named Steve, I always picture a wood stove. Steve and stove, change one letter and you've got stove. So I always picture them burning their hand on the wood stove or, if they've got really nice straight teeth, I think those are the logs and their mouth is the wood stove. I'm looking for some clue about them.
Now I have to caution you. If you want to do this for long term, don't choose a clue or a cue or a trigger that's going to change. I've made that mistake before where I've done presentations for companies and I'll remember last summer, I did a presentation in the fall. I did a follow up workshop for a company and I met a woman, I met a lot of people. I met a hundred people and I remembered their names and when I went back I was thinking, oh boy, I've got to remember these people again. This is a real test, three months later. And I remembered most of them. I had trouble with a few and people understand, even with a memory expert. People understand that we're not perfect and they'll forgive you if you're nice about it.
And I actually went to the organizer and I said, “You know I remembered Visalache [SP]. I remembered Fatima, I remembered Brian, I remembered Bill. I remembered there was a Sergey. I don't remember her across the room. Who is she? She's got short hair, it's going a little grey, see her in the blue pant suit?” “Oh yeah, that's Wendy.” I'm like, “Wendy. I know I met her but did she used to have long hair?” “Oh yeah, she just got it cut.” She had like below shoulder length hair and I remembered her hair whipping around because it was windy, which is my normal Wendy cue and she got her hair dramatically cut. If she only got it trimmed, I would have been okay. If she would have had short hair, I would have pictured her short hair, not whipping around very much even though it was windy, but she went from really long to really short.
Completely threw me, so now I try to make sure I don't cue off of hair anymore. Don't cue off of large earrings, even though they're noticeable, if you need to remember the person more than one day or if you have serious memory trouble. If you just need to bridge like, “I need to remember her name the next 10 seconds and then like on the drive home and by that time, I'll have it”, then you can pretty much do anything. But if you're cuing off of Ida and you're thinking, oh, she's got these huge earrings. That's what's memorable about this woman named Ida. She's generally a, you know, plain, normal, pretty woman. There's nothing really distinctive about her. She's got average length hair, it's an average color, she's got a nice smile. She's just kind of an ordinary person. How am I going to remember Ida? But she's got these huge earrings you think, oh, picture these huge Idaho potatoes sitting in those earrings and you see her the next morning at the breakfast brunch and she doesn't have the earrings on. You look at her and go like, “I have no idea what her name is.” That's a problem.
Tom: Definitely. Now, you're using the photos or the pictures to save it. Can you tell us some ideas about recalling it, because I know that personally, I'll meet somebody, I'll come back a year later, you came back for that other event. How did you recall those names? Was it just pulling those pictures back up or are there any tips for that?
Brad: Yes. Sometimes, for me, for the most part, what I'm doing is I'm interested in people. I'm interested in the people I'm meeting at these events and I'm making the effort to remember them, not because I'm a memory expert or because it's the right thing to do, because I really want to meet people. I really want to remember. I want to know people. People are interesting and I want to get to know them.
So that's kind of different thing than, “Well, this is my job, I've got to remember all these people.” If you go into it with, I'm really interested in people. I want to know this person. Even if I don't think I'm ever going to meet this person ever again, I'd still like to know them. With that attitude, it makes it really easy to remember Visalache and Harney [PH].
So, during the first presentation, generally when I do my presentation, I do a feat of memory. I meet people beforehand. I just say I'm going to be the speaker later and I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Brad, what's your name? Oh, Visalache. That's an interesting name. Okay, how do you spell that? Blah blah blah and then I walk away.
I picture her going to the store with her visa card and buying a latch. Visa latch, okay? So, when I saw her again three months later, I didn't go through that process. I didn't look at her and go, okay, she's a little short, she's thin, what am I picturing her doing? She's well dressed, she's going to the store. I didn't go through that. I knew her name, just the way you know your partner's name or you know your boss's name. You don't have to look at your boss and go okay, let's see. His name, okay I see him drinking something. I pictured him drinking. It's a green bottle, it's Perrier, oh his name is Pierre. Oh that's right. You don't have to go through that when you know people. So, the idea here is we're trying to transition from strangers from people we know and these tips can help in between.
But for the recall stage, if you don't know them, you're looking for that cue. You're looking for okay this is an older woman. I met her at that event. We hit it off, we talked. Older woman, what does that remind me of? Okay, my father-in-law. Edith. Okay, I've got that. If you don't remember who they are, just from having a conversation.
This is the other tip and I've never heard anyone else share this. This is absolute gold. If you realize, “I meet a lot of people and I don't have the greatest memory for that,” this is what you do. The last step is the recall, okay? This is the riser between the saving the information and the recalling the information step. If you meet a lot of people every day, the end of your workday, if you meet people at work, the end of your personal day, if you meet people personally, you write down in a little notebook, preferably not on a computer because it should be something sitting out that you can access when you have a down moment.
Write down the people you meet each day. I met Edith, just the name. I met Edith, I met Visalache, I met Ida, I met Tom, and just put a list of names. This is Thursday and I met Tom, I met Visalache, and then what you do is, every Friday, when you're doing that, you kind of picture. Okay, Edith. She was elderly, she had a great smile, a few wrinkles. Okay, Nafisa had curly hair, and that's right, she said her name was that heritage, okay. Tom, he kind of reminded me of my neighbor.
So you're reviewing this whole time, which is part of the saving process. And then what you do is every Monday, every Friday, every Wednesday, whatever your schedule is, you just flip through your book. You're waiting for a phone call, you've got two minutes. Somebody's supposed to call you at 10:00, it's 9:58. It's like while I'm waiting for this call, let me look at my names. You're like oh, yeah, Edith, okay, Tom, all right, Visalache.
And, as you're doing that, you see the name, because most of us are visual learners, so we can see the name again. And then take half a second and picture what they look like. And if you do that probably every week, you don't have to go necessarily back to the beginning, because you're going to get better and better and after like the second or third time remembering them, you really do know the person.
So when you see Edith again, you don't have to try to remember. It just pops in your mind. So that's something I've never heard anybody else say. Keep a name journal. Now, I've heard people say write down details on the back of a business card and stuff. That can be very helpful as long as then, at your desk, you review those business cards once in a while.
Another way to do it is just review the business cards. Here's Ida's business card. Oh that's right, she's kind of plain looking, she wasn't distinctive, she's got medium length hair, brown, just a normal looking woman. Okay, cool, I've got that. Nafisa. Oh Nafisa, she was that wonderful girl with the curly hair and I met here there and we had that conversation. The review is an essential part of the saving step. So when the recall comes, if you've done the getting the information step and the saving step well, recall happens almost automatically.
Tom: Excellent, excellent information here, Brad. Brad, I know we could go on and continue to talk about this all day. You've got a very in-depth subject. If people are interested in finding out more about you, what is the website for you?
Brad: My website is http://www.insourceyourmemory.com because we outsource our memory way too often and it's a downward spiral. We rely on our computers or our smart phones and we don't exercise our minds. Our minds get weaker and then we have to rely on our smart phones or even the old fashioned sticky notes even more. So, I say don't outsource your memory, in-source your memory. So insourceyourmemory.com. Now if I can throw in one more thing about the recall.
Brad: If you're walking up to someone at a party or an event or something and you don't remember their name, first look for a cue. It's like I met this person, what could I possibly use? And generally, something that jumped out of you the first time will jump out of you again and you'll go okay she's a little bit elderly than most people, and you'll have it. If you don't, say okay, what could her name be and start at the As and start going through, saying names in your head. Amanda, Bethany, Cindy, Denise. You're telling your mind, it's something like this. Look in this section, you'll find it and you might go okay Edwina, Fran, Georgette, Edith! And your mind will pop it in for you. So, just start at the As and go through the alphabet as you walk towards someone smiling and worst case scenario, you'll say, “Now I don't know if I told you when we first met but I'm not great at names and I'm trying to remember your name. Please forgive me. Tell me it again.” And people are fine with that.
Tom: Okay, excellent. Hey, Brad, I appreciate your time today. It hopefully is eye opening for a lot of our listeners. Obviously, this is something that's going to help them in their event planning and to host more memorable events because they're able to create the experiences for their audience and I thank you very much for sharing this with us today.
Brad: Thanks a lot, Tom.
Tom: Maybe not quite what you would expect for an event planning podcast but we have to remember that event planning is more than just picking out drapes or selecting entertainment. It's about creating an experience for your guests and, hopefully, by remembering them and using some of these techniques, you'll be able to create a more personal experience for your guests.
Again, Brad, I want to thank you for being on here. If you're interested in his three steps to remembering things, you can find the link for that on the show notes which is at savvyeventspodcasts.com/episode5. That's episode and then the number five. All the show notes are there, along with the transcription of this interview.
If you have any comments about the program, don't forget you can leave those on our website under the show notes. We have a comment section there, or you could join in and talk to us on Facebook. All you have to do is search for the group Savvy Event podcast. We're there. It's not hard to find.
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Now, next week, we're going to be going back to a more traditional discussion on event planning. We're going to talk about how to frame your talent at an event, whether it's a speaker or whether it's a musician or a variety act. Whatever talent you have, there are ways to frame it so that your guests eagerly anticipate it. So, that's what's coming up next week. Until then, my name's Tom Crowl and, as always, I'm wishing you an incredible event.
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