I was honored to speak about Museum Hack at SumoCon 2017 in Austin, Texas. Here are some of my favorite memories from the conference.

New and Old Friends

My selfie rampage continues. These might not be the most flattering of photos, but they are my friends. So I hope they will forgive me.

Chris Schlezi and I near the Sumo cornhole receptacle

Me, David Hauser (Founder of Grasshopper), and Ayman (COO of AppSumo)

Me and Adam, who is friends with my friend Chad Rubin

Noah Kagan in the background of me and Eric from Beard Brand

General Conference Notes

  • Great music in the morning! Loud, pop, peppy, upbeat. Reminded me of a Tony Robbins event.
  • True care by the Sumo staff for people with dietary restrictions. Very cool.
  • Ayman reports that over 140 people are attending from 100 different cities, each with an average revenue over $900,000.
  • I loved Noah’s “Learn How to Speak Texan” activity where we all had to say Howdy, Y’all, and Breakfast Taco.

Great slide about hiring from Eric Siu of Single Grain

  • Eric Siu from Single Grain: good talk to start it off, focusing on hiring.
  • Tool: Dux Soup for LinkedIn profile growth.
  • Eric likes asking, “Tell me about a time that you had to adapt on the fly.” During job interviews.
  • Eric gave this advice for doing reference checks: ask, “Compared to their peers, how would you rate this person on a scale of 1-10?”
  • Brennan Dunn referenced a nice quote: “Tactics before strategy is the noise before defeat.” His speech was about winning hearts and minds with personalization.

Sumo Wrestling Sunday

On the last day, a sumo champion from Japan was introduced. He wrestled a few members from the audience, then there was a big show-down with Noah Kagan, the founder of AppSumo and Sumo.com

An attendee challenges the sumo wrestler on the main stage (he lost)

Me and the big sumo. He was GREAT at photos

Breakout Sessions and Workshops

Hosted between keynote speaker blocks were breakout sessions on different topics. These are the ones that I attended:

Outbound Marketing Techniques by Gerard

Hosted by Gerard Compte from FindThatLead. I really enjoyed the presenter’s energy, spirit, and data-rich examples. He seems like a really good guy who is passionate about his business. I want to see if or how we could use his services at Museum Hack.

Sales, Sales, Sales by Codie Sanchez

Codie’s why: “There is no freedom until you have financial freedom.” She talked about First Mover Advantage vs. Stealing Market Share.

Codie is a good presenter. She is tall, attractive, strong, extremely confident, and charismatic. We learned a few practical things, such as the Napkin Technique for closing sales. I found it to be helpful. Her workshop also included an activity where we wrote down the five characteristics of an ideal client.

Hiring a CEO by Zach Obront

Favorite. Zach Obront from Book In A Box discussed with a small group the opportunities and challenges in hiring a CEO to run his business. There were only 10 people in this session, which allowed for a very rich discussion-based format. Zach was very transparent, sharing some early failures and eventual big wins with specific revenue and salary numbers.

Facebook Ads by Henry and Jack

Great drapes, great ombré. Henry and Jack talking about Facebook ads

Real-life, actionable advice to improve results for paid Facebook Ads. Example: consider running B2B ads only on WiFi, as mobile data ads may result in more “scrolling the Newsfeed” mentality with less results or action. The slides were shared online.

My Keynote: Museum Hack and Hiring

On Saturday afternoon, I spoke about Museum Hack including: How I got started giving renegade museum tours, what makes Museum Hack tours totally different than most museum tours, my advice and tips for hiring, and most importantly: Why I think museums matter.

A few of my slides about Museum Hack including one of my favorite objects at the Met Museum

My Hiring Slides

I’m not perfect at hiring or firing, but I’ve made my fair share of mistakes. My goal was to share what I’ve learned with other entrepreneurs so they can be successful in the growth of their companies. My slides on hiring addressed these questions:

  • Do I have to give equity?
  • What’s the first hire I should make?
  • How to fire someone?
  • Sharing of a few horror stories
  • 2 special hiring tips for larger startups
  • Applicant Tracking Software
  • My favorite book about hiring

Testimonial: My Speech Was Awesome

Nice Tweet about my talk at SumoCon 2017

SumoCon Signage

This company is good at branding. I took a few pictures of the signage for posterity.

Welcome signage at the hotel in downtown Austin near the Capitol

Gift bags were given to all the attendees

Agenda for Day 1 at SumoCon 2017

Signage for three days of events was displayed in the entry.

Conclusion

I loved meeting fellow entrepreneurs at SumoCon. Some of my favorite memories from this conference were in the hallways, at breakfast, and in the breakout rooms “talking shop.” Thank you Noah, Ayman, and Chris for inviting me and I hope I can come back next year.

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