Monthly Archives: August 2019

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Best Practices no. 124- Advice from a Guy Who Works with Conference Celebs

Last time I talked about using celebs to boost attendance at conferences, so this week I thought I’d talk with a guy who works WITH the celebs. Just don’t call him an Agent (you’ll see why later).

Here’s Rikki at a convention with actor Brian O’Halloran from Clerks.

I met Rikki Adams a few years back at X-Con, a pop culture convention in Myrtle Beach SC. As we were both there for a number of years, we got to know each other pretty well. You might also remember X-Con was also mentioned in a previous interview with Robin Roberts, the founder of X-Con.

Rikki quickly progressed in the convention scene from a volunteer to a fulltime job. As a matter of fact, he’s booked almost every single weekend this year working conventions. As he works professionally year-round in the industry, he has a lot to offer. To avoid inundating you with a monstrous e-mail, I’ll break his interview down into several segments.

For now, I’ll let him tell you about his best experiences working conventions. Here’s Rikki-

It was definitely XCON. I considered it a mid-sized CON.  The volunteers were local and we all knew each other as friends. Being friends helped because it made us care about the big picture, which was to ensure everyone had a good time, including the clients.

Everyone was assigned duties based on their strengths.  There were also a lot of activities just for the volunteers and awards given out at the end for those that went above and beyond. I remember one year the award went to the guy that volunteered to clean up the vomit in the bouncy house. He actually volunteered to clean it up. Another nice thing  about XCON was the after dinner. There were two. One for the clients and one for the volunteers. It was nice touch.

I enjoy the bigger cons, but I tend to lean towards a smaller ones because they’re more intimate.

I can’t really say there has been a “worst experience” as a volunteer.  I was just happy to be there. The only time it gets bad is when there is someone in charge, and they do not know what they are doing.
At XCON we would meet throughout the year before the show and discuss our assignments. By the time the show starts, we all know what is expected and are able to handle the unexpected.  And if we couldn’t, we knew who to contact for guidance.

You don’t see this a big cons. There are so many people involved and sometimes it would take an hour just to find the right person to talk to.

After working two shows as a volunteer I was officially signed on with ZSC entertainment.  I would be called as an agent or handler…but I am neither.  We are assistants to the agent. Handlers are volunteers that get assigned to assist us.  I am OK with being called a handler, but it does offend others within this group.

When someone’s intros me as an agent, I correct them because the agent is the boss and has a lot more responsibilities than I. I would never want my boss to think that I was trying to pretend I was her. So as long as I am not referred to as an agent, I am OK.

We’ll hear more of Rikki’s story in future newsletters. He has a lot of advice for vendors, speakers, and promoters.

Until then, I’ll leave you with this, Brian O’Halloran cutting off Rikki’s ponytail at X-Con to give you an idea of the steps Rikki goes through to keep his clients and the audience happy.

Thanks for tuning in,
Dr. Redbeard, a speaker who has no hair for Brian to chop off

For information on booking me as a speaker, click HERE.


This message was written by a team of geeks, nerds, gamers, and Dr. David Powers. You can always find us at Thanks for reading!

In the words of Starship Troopers, “Would you like to know more?”





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Couches are Repositories for Butt Sweat and Farts (no. 82)

Most life coaches and motivational speakers will act like everything is perfect. Sure, they’ll tell you about a past time when they hit a few roadblocks. As a matter of fact, it’s the main theme or story in most keynotes. But the bad stuff is always in the past, never the present or even the recent past.

Not me.

I’d rather tell you about how I screw up or when things go wrong. That way you can glean some lessons from it. Like a good parent, it’s my job to help you recover from or avoid the same mistakes I make.

You know, like the time last year I busted my head open climbing on an old abandoned train.

Let’s talk about couches. Most of them are pretty gross. When I visit people’s homes, I always angle for the hard furniture, like a dining room chair, and not the soft cushiony stuff. Basically, couches are repositories for years of butt sweat and farts. Those things get trapped in the fibers and soak into your clothes when you sit down.

Let me tell you about my couch. Here it is by the dumpster.

It’s gross.

It’s got all the adult smells plus 15 years with 5 kids. That means 15 years of kid farts, poop accidents, puke, and pee-throughs times five.

It was time for a new couch a long time ago, so what were we waiting for?

Here’s the success story part of the message. We just got completely out of debt, including the mortgage and cars, using the principles from Dave Ramsey. Then we budgeted $1500 for a new couch and saved up the money to pay cash for it. Even better, we found a great one at Costco for only $1000.

We wanted something like THIS, but it just didn’t fit the budget, and we’re okay with that.

Boom! We got a new couch with that new couch smell and no stains. Also, with only one kid still in diapers, the stains and smells will decrease greatly.

Here’s the lessons from this story:

  • Don’t sit on other people’s couches unless you know them well.
  • Get out of debt.
  • Any speaker or coach with a 100% perfect life is full of crap.
  • Don’t ever take a used couch from anyone.
  • Save up cash and go buy a new couch.
  • If you want to sit on my couch, visit soon while it’s new.

Dr. Redbeard

PS: Send me photos of your couches. You can see ours and some fun in the video HERE.

PSS: The absolute best thing about a new couch- huge boxes to make forts out of!


This message was written by a team of geeks, nerds, gamers, and Dr. David Powers. You can always find us at Thanks for reading!

In the words of Starship Troopers, “Would you like to know more?”





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