Associations Focus: Follow the Leaders
Nov 1, 2005 12:00 PM
Every year after InfoComm, about 100 dedicated pro-AV professionals gather for the InfoComm Fall Leadership Forum. This forum brings together the steering committees of InfoComm International’s councils and committees to determine their plans for the coming year. Given the unique makeup that reflects the association’s membership, these groups represent the entire distribution chain of the AV industry.
The forum is a hotbed of activity, during which the individual councils meet to plan their courses, as well as shape initiatives that InfoComm International may undertake. In addition to helping their market segments, the councils come together for the betterment of the AV industry as a whole. When issues need to be addressed from multiple perspectives, several councils meet to provide insight, a process resulting in a rich tapestry of experience, ideas, goals, and plans for the direction of the industry.
This year, the councils jointly discussed important topics such as intellectual property guidelines, how to expand on InfoComm’s AV Best Practices guide, and creative ideas for the continued expansion and success of the InfoComm trade shows. The Leadership Forum enables members to provide their ideas to be budgeted by the association for the upcoming year.
Below is a brief summary of the activities of the councils. Members of InfoComm International can read full meeting summaries at infocomm.org.
ICAT’s (Independent Consultants in Audiovisual Technology) main topic of discussion was education, and it is working with the association to help update and create courses for designers. The proposed increase in education opportunities also included an expanded workforce development program in community colleges.
The Independent Programmers council covered three main initiatives. The first was a Roadmap for Control, which aims to foster the “humanization” of programming code. Next, they discussed progress on the ongoing Dashboard for Controls project, including expanded documentation, education, and usability testing. The programmers also took part in a lively forum on intellectual property rights and ownership issues.
The Independent Representatives council is developing a questionnaire to help define its segment of the industry in terms of purpose and scope, and to discuss the changing role of reps and distribution models. An action plan was put in place to develop some education devices to assist in lead generation for reps.
On the Manufacturers Council, work continued on a Standard Pricing Format, which received support from the systems integrators and other groups. The project, in the beta testing phase, will ultimately streamline the process of distributing and updating pricing and product descriptions. The council also worked on a legal documents reference resource and manufacturers training at InfoComm 06.
The Membership Council developed a new mission statement, as well as numerous plans to assist in welcoming and recruiting new members to InfoComm International.
PETC (Professional Education and Training Committee) is responsible for InfoComm International’s education curriculum. They met with representatives from all councils to better understand what topics and courses each segment would benefit from at InfoComm 06. The new look and feel of the InfoComm Certified Technology Specialist (CTS) program was debuted and marked new developments of the widely successful program.
The Presentations Council focused on various ways to distribute its message and educate the industry on the benefits of using presentations professionals. In addition to suggesting courses for InfoComm 06, the council worked to plan education and Webinars in conjunction with InfoComm road shows designed to promote the industry.
The Rental and Staging Council is invigorated around ways to enhance the InfoComm experience for rental and staging professionals. The group discussed potential new exhibitors focused on staging, as well as new courses and events.
The SAVVI Council (Sound, Audiovisual, and Video Integrators) worked with other councils on several joint projects such as AV best practices, intellectual property, the Dashboard for Controls, and the new Standard Pricing Format. It also engaged in a discussion on techniques for workforce.
The Technology Managers Council (Formerly End Users Council) also took part in the discussions on intellectual property rights and identified important issues for their representation. The group is seeking new ways to promote the industry and membership in the association. The Technology Managers are continuing work on creating a technical guide for presenters, with assistance from the Presentations Council.