Partnerships, Shared Visions and Stepping Forward
After a series of compelling talks with Outback CEO Murray Seward, in April, I decided to move my virtual entertainment team-building products to this vibrant, successful company. Why not stay independent? My original products are unique, my clients are devoted and I am very proud of what I’ve accomplished on my own -new material popping into my head literally every day.
The reason to move became more and more clear as I spoke with Murray (and did my Google digging). He dove into virtual events a full two years before the pandemic hit. He could already see the vast potential the medium had before our culture had even contemplated how valuable it truly was. He then pointed his staff towards it and by late February 2020, Outback was already killing it with 3,600 virtual team-building events per year.
The final puzzle piece fit perfectly when I could see Murray’s enthusiasm and vision for this medium was the same as mine. We could both see that this is the tip of a very large iceberg. The virtual event products that Outback could help me explore and build, with their marketing reach and amazing organization, meant that I’d be part of a team that produced unique and creative material that would allow our clients to invite their work teams, leadership groups and clients to online experiences that really made an impact, bringing laughter and connection – streaming to home offices and living rooms around the world. How could I say no?
Throughout May, I trained 3 new game event hosts to do what I learned how to do, simplified the operation controls on all my event presentation decks and worked with the gifted Outback leadership to implement the assimilation of my 3 top-selling products into the Outback Teambuilding & Training virtual product offerings. My mind initially boggled at the scale of the operation that COO Jules Joyce runs like a well-oiled machine, and the impressive skill shown by the sales team Director of Sales Tiff Daniels has put together and oversees. It was definitely a challenge to adjust years of successful “solo-preneur” thinking to this new, complex operation. But as we roll into July, we’ve booked and delivered a long list of successful virtual events and received glowing feedback from clients and guests, and my hosts are turning into seasoned team-building entertainment coordinators. I’m constantly tweaking and improving the content and production value of my virtual products in play: Virtual Beach Staycation, Pop Trivia Time Machine and Virtual Happy Hour Pub Quiz, and happily making international trivia content that will be more compelling for our European and APAC groups. Even after this short time, it’s quite clear that I’ve made the right decision to take this leap of faith.
When the dust settles, I’m hoping to dig into my latest product idea: enhanced emcee service for online conferences and award ceremonies. A one-stop shop for client that need to infuse any for formal virtual event with humour, engagement and production value.
What About Onsite Event Entertainment?
Clearly I expect this endeavour to claim the majority of my energy and time. So, what about the onsite entertainment products you’ve booked for years? I will still be offering the essentials as I install a trusted onsite entertainment manager to reply promptly to your emails and lock in your booking. I will be available and happy to emcee onsite events, and would love to see my most popular characters entertaining your guests: The Canadian Forest Rangers, Roving Game Show Hosts, the Master Winer, ET Red Carpet Reporter, and Hollywood Screen Tests.