Hilarity Ensued


Hilarity Ensued

So many things are age related these days. Why not have a seminar at PIE 2023 that meets that low bar? One of the best attended and most enjoyed seminars in Dallas was the one which pitted the wits of the more ‘senior’ members of our profession against each other. Hilarity ensued.

Imagine six panelists that have over 250 years cumulative time in our industry. What they have seen? What they have heard? What they have remembered? What some hope they have forgotten? Add a consultant, a developer and former operator, an entrepreneur, an owner/operator/consultant, and yes, even a magazine editor, put ‘em on a stage with a microphone, and you can guess what happens

.Each has a story or two to tell, plus comments on stories others tell, plus they will answer your questions and show you what experience can bring to the table. Most, if not all, of these panelists began collecting money with a cigar box, and grew through time clocks, ticket spitters, computers, pay on foot machines, automated garages, and yes, even the advent of cell phone apps. 

What secrets do they keep locked in their memories? How can we get them to open up and tell you what it was like back when? Could a question or two from the attendees set them off? Will blood be shed? 

“Were you ever temped to put a few quarters in your pocket?” 

“What was the biggest theft you ever discovered?”

“Does a computerized system really stop theft? Do you have to audit them?”

“What was the most dangerous situation you ever experienced in a garage?”

“Why would a garage manager never take a vacation?”

“Which is better, having staff on site or having an unstaffed, fully automated garage?”

“Why did you stay in this industry so long?”

Perhaps the most cogent question might be “what would you tell a newbie entering the parking profession?”

This seminar is fun, exciting, and can get out of hand. These people know each other from years gone by and have become legends in the parking industry. Their names are Barbara Chance, John Hammerschlag, Mike Simmons, Clyde Wilson, Peter Guest, and yours truly.

Come to this seminar – a friend looked at the list and said that we should have a defibrillator in the room. HA.

Article contributed by:
John Van Horn
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