An interview with Jo Michel

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Ahead of a trip to Australia in November for the Ticketing Professionals Australia conference with our MD Simon, our friend, Dave Wakeman is taking some time out to catch up with a founder of the conference, Jo Michel.

Read on to see what they said:

“Simon and I are off to Sydney, Australia for the Ticketing Professionals Australia Conference on 14 and 15 November at Bankwest Stadium.

In anticipation of our visit to Sydney, we have been talking with people around Australia about some of the opportunities and challenges that people are dealing with.

In the lead-in to the conference, we are going to be sharing a lot of opinions and ideas from leaders in the industry.

The first person we chatted with is Jo Michel, one of the co-founders of the conference, and a great leader and mentor in the ticketing world.

Here’s our conversation with Jo: (Our questions are in bold and some light editing was made for clarity.)

What made you and Angela decide to put on a conference like this?

I’ve wanted to curate a conference for Ticketing Professionals in Australia since I started going to Europe Talks Tickets back in the early 2000’s.

We did have a conference for a few years, which was lead by a great colleague and friend Tim Roberts in conjunction with Stage Queensland.

The Ticketing Professionals Australia Conference ran from 2004 for about 7 years, until Tim died unexpectedly.

Both Angela and I were contributors and speakers at the conference during that time.

Then in 2017 at the INTIX Conference in New Orleans, Angela & I were the only Australian delegates and late one night surrounded by fantastic colleagues from all over the world we decided that we needed to band together to bring a conference back to the Australian Industry.

So on our return we worked on establishing our company Mission Tickets and buying the IP from the previous conference and began a plan to bring it back to life. W are really excited to have achieved a successful trial last year and can’t wait to welcome everyone to Bankwest Stadium in November.

What are you most excited about seeing happening?

I love ticketing. Most of all I love sharing experiences with my colleagues and peers.

So I am excited to see the networking and sharing of ideas that has been missing from our local industry.

I also can’t wait to have our colleagues from the arts sharing their stories with the sports guys and girls.

That’s what makes us work better and smarter, sharing our stories, challenges and ideas with each other.

Are there themes that you are highlighting or hoping come to the forefront?

We want to be reasonably broad in our approach.

But this is an education led conference, so the topics that are relevant to the industry today will be a focus.

Change, which is the topic of Dave’s keynote, is always a big challenge for us and we need to remember that change is positive.

Of course, social responsibility, new technologies, digital trends and customer experience are all areas we will be exploring and have invited local and international experts to guide the sessions.

How do you hope attendees will approach coming to the conference?

The hope is that attendees will come with an open mind and a willingness to learn and share.

I know that the best conferences I have been to are the ones where I have gone not knowing what to expect and just having conversations and learning as much from the delegates as I did from the sessions.

I hope they engage with each other, the speakers and with Angela and I.

We want to involve the industry so we’re open to people coming to us with ideas or wanting to give opinions, join a panel or moderate a session.

Why is having an international presence so important?

We’ve been lucky to attend quite a few international conferences.

Getting ideas and influences from outside the local environment allow us to see ourselves differently.

It also allows us to benchmark and identify areas in the industry that are working well or exceeding as well as areas where we have things to learn.

Having an international presence invites delegates to expand their contacts, have different conversations and maybe even take back a new idea to try.”

Make sure you connect with Simon and Dave at the Ticketing Professionals Australia Conference. If you are going to be there, send them a note and let them know.

You can reach Simon at Simon.Mabb@BookingProtect.com and you can reach Dave at Dave@DaveWakeman.com

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