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In This Issue
Galveston Island CVB

by Dan Coughlin

Pride has gotten a bad rap over the years.

First, it got lumped into the seven deadly sins, and then it was labeled a negative as executives and managers went in search of humility. It became the in-thing to say, "I was just lucky to be surrounded by good people, and I really didn’t have anything to do with our success." If humility means focusing on the good of the organization and not pounding on your chest about how great you are or how your organization’s results happened just because of you, then I agree. If humility means putting yourself down in every situation just so you appear to be humble, I suggest you stay away from it.

Being proud of what happened in the past can you give the fuel to focus on acting in a way that you will be proud of what happens in the future. Strengthening your level of pride does require some reflection time and effort.

Be Proud of Yourself, Your Family, and Your Community

Start with your personal life. Is there something you did over the past year to take better care of yourself or to develop some aspect of who you are or to improve the way you present yourself to other people that you are particularly proud of? Start a list of "Things I’m Proud Of" and put that on your list.

Move on to your family life. What are you proud of that you did in the past year? Was there a moment or an experience you had with a family member that you are proud of in the way you handled it? Is there something about your whole family or a member of your family that makes you proud to be part of that group? Too often people put their families down as being dysfunctional. Every family has parts that function well and parts that do not function well. It doesn’t make the family "dysfunctional." It means it’s a family.

Focus on the pride you have in your family. Think about the community you live in. What have you done in your community over the past year that you are proud of, regardless of whether or not it generated a great result? What about your community are you proud of?

Be Proud of Your Organization and the Work You Do

Think of the work you’ve done over the past year. Write down the various projects you were involved with and the day-to-day work that never changed. What about your efforts and accomplishments are you proud of? This doesn’t mean that you achieved some amazing results. Business results are partly determined by the marketplace and the economic conditions. However, the quality of your work and your attention to detail is completely independent of the marketplace and the economy. What is it that you did or created this past year that you are proud of?

If you don’t take the time to identify what you are proud of, you may not see the importance of your work going forward. Regardless of whether or not you were recognized by your boss, got a promotion or a raise, or heard from your peer group, it is still vitally important that you take the time to identify what you are proud of in your past. Knowing that you did something you are proud of will give you the motivation to persevere and to continue to make the effort necessary to be proud of your future activities.

What are you proud of in your organization? Is there a group within your company that inspires you with their level of commitment to your customers? What is it about your company’s brand and what it represents that you are proud of?

Notice: this article is mainly about questions rather than examples. I really want you to take out a sheet of paper and write down what you are proud of. For the past four years the world has focused on its problems and financial difficulties. We need to step off that train for awhile and focus instead on what we are proud of in our lives. Too many people are acting like this is the worst generation in the history of the world. If all we focus on is what we’re doing a poor job at, then we will continue to recycle the downward spiral. Earl Nightingale had six great pieces of advice. He said, "You become what you think about." Take some time to think about what you are proud of in your life.

Be Proud of Your Country

In the massive debates over whether or not huge countries should spend more than they bring in every month, there seems to be a vacuum around the discussion of pride in one’s country. The political debates around the world have become more divisive and more concentrated on what is wrong with each country. What are you proud of about your country? Write it down. Know it. See it every day.

Be Proud of Your Future

After you have taken the time to really identify what you are proud of in your life, I want you to answer this question, "What would I have to do in the future to be truly proud of myself?"

I’m not talking about acclaim from others and expensive possessions. I’m talking about the way you try to make an impact in the world around you at home, in your community, in your work, and in your country.

In this way, personal pride can become a driving force for living the kind of life you want to sustain for as long as you live. Don’t be fooled by those people who say pride is wrong. It’s not wrong to be proud of your efforts even when no one else recognizes them and you don’t achieve great financial success. Having a new car or home is fun, but those aren't the only things to be proud of. Instead, be proud of your effort that allowed you to buy the home or car. And if you weren’t able to afford a new car or home, be proud of the effort you put in to try to be financially successful or to try to add more value to a customer. Pride can’t be just about the award or reward. It also has to focus on your effort and the quality of what you actually did. Don’t be fooled into believing you have nothing to be proud of just because your actual results may have fallen far short of your desired results.

The vast majority of great achievers in the past have had very long stretches where they produced very poor results. However, they took pride in their work and kept persevering until the quality of their work intersected with the needs of the marketplace and produced a suddenly "successful" person. Don’t focus on having to have success at the end of every rainbow of effort. Instead, take pride in the actual quality of the effort you are putting into creating greater value for other people and to producing the result you want.

About Dan Coughlin

Visit The Coughlin Company. Dan Coughlin is a leading authority on managing for long-term business success. Dan’s purpose is to make it simpler to be a great business manager. He is a business keynote speaker, seminar leader, and executive coach on leadership, innovation, and branding. He is also the author of four books on generating sustainable, profitable growth. His clients include McDonald’s, GE, Toyota, Prudential, Coca-Cola, Marriott, Jack in the Box, Boeing, Abbott, Denny’s, Subway, Kiewit, Ace Hardware, and the St. Louis Cardinals.

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Upcoming Events

Planning to sit for the January 2012 Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) Examination?

If so, don’t miss out on the PMPI Fall CMP Course starting September 26.


Monday, October 10, 2011
5:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. at The Venetian Las Vegas

Mix and mingle with hundreds of IMEX America attendees prior to the start of IMEX America at this MPI-hosted Welcome Reception. This invitation-only reception, sponsored by Tourism Toronto, will feature light appetizers and cocktails as well as plenty of networking.



Join PMPI for the October Learning Experience
Thursday, October 13, 2011.

Please plan on joining PMPI and Speaker Christian Saucedo, CEO, Spotme, Inc. for the October Educational Experience: How to use Meeting Design to Leverage the Latest Technology.

In this interactive session, he will discuss the technologies that are out there and how planners and suppliers have used them to their benefit. He will describe good design techniques and give best practices on how to match those techniques to your desired outcomes.

Additionally, come see all of the latest and greatest technologies in our Technology Showcase. For more information on this event, please contact Jason Wooten at or Katie Herritage at

Registration will open mid September!


Save the Date – MACE! 2012
February 9-10, 2012
Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center 

No matter where you are in your career, everyone is looking to advance to the next level. Whether it’s a new title, new company, or taking a new career direction, staying up to date on industry trends and education is the key to advancement. Join PMPI for an incredible two-day event at which PMPI will take education to the next level, focusing on career advancement and new industry trends, while continuing the successful Flipped Marketplace, bringing planners and suppliers together for one-on-one interactions.

Registration will open in early November 2011

Attention Suppliers: the Marketplace sold out in 2011, so make sure to register early to guarantee your spot!

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for MACE, please contact Melissa Benowitz at or at 301-948-4600.


The National Conference Center
News and Announcements

You’ve all seen COC members donning green aprons and selling raffle tickets at PMPI events, and chances are you’ve also had to pass on a raffle ticket because you didn’t have any cash in your wallet. Now there’s another way to help, and no donation is too small. Look for the COC’s Power of Change collection jar at event registration and you can make a donation of any amount. The funds raised through the Power of Change will be added to PMPI’s overall donation to our charity of the year, Martha’s Table. It’s a great, feel-good way to get rid of all those pesky pennies!

Also, the COC is excited to start work with another charity, Clean the World. Attendees of WEC likely know Clean the World as one of MPI’s partner charities, and PMPI is eager to get the program going in the DC area. Clean the World is an organization that collects and recycles used soap and shampoo products. The recycled items are then distributed to impoverished communities throughout the world to help stop the spread of disease. To help with this program, please contact Jessica LaVay at


P.O.W.E.R. your team for a whole year!

Invest in the PMPI P.O.W.E.R. Pass and get a year’s worth of education experiences and meet & mingle events for only a fraction of the cost. Click here for the details.


The PMPI Insider will continue to be a part of the monthly Education Experiences, meeting for about 30-45 minutes before or after the regular agenda.

While new members are still the target audience for this "fundamentals" session, the content will be jazzed up in hopes of attracting a broader cross-section of our PMPI members.

"We want the message to be that, no matter how many years you have been a PMPI member, there are always more ways to grow and more benefits to gain through your participation. And PMPI Insider is a great resource to help you find those opportunities," says Member Care Co-Chair, Kate McCarthy.

Look for the new PMPI Insider sessions to be unveiled beginning at the October EE! We hope to see you there!

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Please visit our website at to learn more and register for all of our events,
as well as information about the resources we have to offer you.