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Western & Southern Life - 2017 Leaders Sales Meeting

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2018, Click to Enter The 2019 Stevie Awards for Sales and Customer Service

Company: Western & Southern Life, Cincinnati, OH
Company Description: Founded in 1888, Western & Southern Life offers insurance, retirement products and investments to America's middle market. The company maintains 138 offices operating in 23 states and Washington DC, and employs licensed field personnel to provide personalized needs analysis and make recommendations.
Nomination Category: Sales Awards Achievement Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Sales Meeting of the Year

Nomination Title: 2017 Leaders Sales Meeting, Maui, HI

Tell the story about your organization's sales meeting (up to 650 words). Include sections describing the genesis, development, production, and results to date of the event:

The Leaders Sales Meeting ("LSM")is Western & Southern Life's primary means of recognizing and incentivizing sales excellence. Held annually in May, invitations are granted to a small percentage of sales professionals who qualified based on sales and service.

The 2017 Leaders Sales Meeting occurred May 9-14, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa. Planning for this event began a year prior. Four primary objectives were laid out to our team, each tied to how we wanted our qualifiers to feel once the conference concluded:

1. Recognized respected & appreciated.
2. They'd learned from and networked with business partners and gained actionable take-aways.
3. They understood the key role they play as part of our winning team.
4. Motivated to raise their personal bar and committed to demonstrating their winning mindset locally.

Between January and May 2017, the LSM planning and execution teams met weekly, with dozens of additional, ad hoc meetings occurring specific to scripting, A/V, business content and more.

The conference included morning main stage business content, followed by free time for qualifiers andguests in the afternoons. Each evening entailed a different large group social event, including the awards banquet, which was held Friday evening. Ballroom production includedsix, 10' LED towers with computer-generated graphics supporting our theme, as well as extensive use of video, audio and gobo lighting.

New Technology: The 2017 LSM marked the first time we used an event app, significantly reducing printed collateral and resulting in a savings exceeding$10,000 for printing and shipping. We also leveraged the app to support networking - Beach balls bearing qualifers' nameswere left on every ballroom table. Everyone was encouaged to take a ball and find the person whose name was on it. Then, they were asked toexchange a sales tip, take a selfie together, and post it to the app's social feed. This was wildly popular - almost every one of our140 qualifiers took part, meeting fellow achievers, using the new technologyand having fun.This was an extremely cost-effective activity (beach balls cost pennies each) that resulted in a huge pop.

Memorable Moments: We take pride increating emotional and memorable"moments" throughout the LSM. We are a large Fortune 500 company however we want our qualifiers and guests to feel like family. Recognition of our category leaders typically includes a video that is shot prior to the conference, so when it's played it really isn't a surprise to those being profiled. What our leading Financial Rep didn't know, however, was that we edited his video to include a special message from his wife, who had to remain home as she was expecting triplets. Tears and applauseflooded the ballroom, creating a poignant moment for our leading Financial Rep, who was crying, too. Another "moment" was a surprise large-screen photo montage of our qualifiers and their loved ones. Our event team pulled the images from social media with permission. This straightforward project showed our qualifiers we realize their success comes, in part, from their loving and supportive families. Again; this cost very little other than prep time, yet yielded very positive results.Finally, weensuredqualifiers' names and images were EVERYWHERE they went during the conference as another form of recognition.

Executive Face Time: Throughout the conference, Western & Southern's senior executives were present, engaging in small group and one-on-one dialogues with our qualifiers. This type of access -to our CEO,President,CMO &VP of Sales - is unprecedented. Executives exchanged ideas with qualifiers, gathering feedback and sharing advance notice on upcoming initiatives. This "face time" creates an extraordinary experience for our qualifiers.

Outcomes: After the LSM concluded, we released a highlight video to our qualifiers to serve as a memento. MDRT membership up 20%. LSM rated "good" or "excellent" by 96% of survey respondents.

(Music has been removed frommost video excerpts due to copyright limitations.)