The Value of Attending CES 2017

Interview with Design 1st VP Sales, Ian Kayser on value of attending CES 2017

Return on Investment is always top of mind for Design 1st so being away four days to attend CES 2017 means there must be a pretty strong motivator. Ian Kayser certainly thinks so.

I sat down with him to talk about his experience from CES 2016 and why it is beneficial to attend this year.


Author: Joan Highet

Ian Kayser, VP Sales

 Q: Ian, why is attending the Consumer Electronics Show a good investment?

A:  There is a multitude of reasons I personally attend. I’m Vice President of Sales at Design 1st so on the sales side, I look for new business and insights into what clients are looking to create. But equally important is that CES showcases innovation and imagination at its best, specifically in technology from my perspective. I get a world view of what’s happening.

For example, a wearable used to refer to a timepiece, now there are a myriad of electronic wearables that monitor exercise, health and vital signs, security, commercial vehicles etc. There is an explosion in drones and places where the technology can be used in security, lifestyle, maintenance and surveillance of infrastructure. Just a couple of examples of technology skyrocketing and how humanity can change.

Q: Was there one thing that stayed with you the most from the show?

A: There was more than one. As I indicated before, drones will be an integral part of our life. For sure there are issues and challenges but the will be overcome with great design and learning. Automation in transportation like autonomous driving cars. Once there is consumer confidence, it will be a sea change in our society. Robotics is another area that is coming forward at quieter but rapid pace, with the ability to bring massive change.

If you are a business person in technology or design, you need to have world exposure. Design 1st may be in Ottawa, Canada but our market and clients are across the globe. CES opens your eyes to possibilities, discussions and potential. It’s a tremendous opportunity to connect with clients, suppliers, and build new relationships with people from everywhere.

Q: Ian, the footprint of CES is massive, last year some 2.47M net square feet. How do you decide where to start and what advice would you give someone attending for the first time?

A: You need a framework or an initial plan as the show can overwhelm you. You also must be prepared to pivot and modify as you get caught up in discussions. Focus on an industry that is relevant to your business, attend keynotes of interest, look for lead generation opportunities, new innovation and educate yourself. You need to be ahead of the technology and continue to be the expert to your clients.

Q: One last question, how do you share your experience with your team back home?

A: This is very important. Our firm makes a point of de-briefing with the partners post these events and ensuring our resources share in the knowledge and are updated on the latest trends. At Design 1st, we are in front of our clients every day and CES 2017 provides an additional layer of confidence in the trust they place in us.

Thank you, Ian, for your insights.

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