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Reference Point
a newsletter for customer reference professionals
DECEMBER 2006
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holiday It's been a busy 2006 for our community. After spending intense face time with top reference professionals in North America and Europe this year, I've jotted down a few thoughts in my blog about the state of the profession as we close out 2006, plus a question and a prediction for you to chew on as we approach the New Year. Following is a summary.

But first a quick heads up. Our next US event will be next Spring in late April or early May on the West coast. I'll have more details for you after the 1st.


-- Reference professionals in Europe have it tougher than we do in the US.

-- My sense before our London event was that European reference professionals are more tactical and less strategic than their American counterparts. Wrong. These folks see the big picture and are working to influence it.

-- We Americans can definitely learn something from our European counterparts about how to party -- I mean, engage in after-hours, off-site networking!

-- We held our fourth US event in Dallas and I'm still amazed at the sheer passion of our community for their work, and for interacting with each other. And I think we're doing a better job of ferreting out and capturing our collective wisdom on the best methods for running reference programs.

-- Our newly formed Special Interest Group on Metrics led by Lucent's thoughtful Barb Krasner, which focuses on how to establish the business value of a reference program, was a big hit. We'll be getting more SIGs up and running next year.

-- What's Missing? In both North America and Europe, there is still a considerable lack of awareness about Net Promoters.

-- A Question. Would it not make sense to locate reference programs in the sales organization, as opposed to marketing? Why? Please click the link below.

-- A Prediction (thanks to Point of Reference's David Sroka for this). The day is not far away when greatly expanded "customer programs" will be the domain of VPs or even Chief Customer Officers. This bodes well for reference professionals.

For more info on any of these topics, plus results and pics from our London and Dallas events, please click here. That's it for now. I want to wish you the happiest of holidays and a wonderful 2007.

Best,
Bill


Reference Point is a Customer Reference Forum newsletter about reference programs and how to improve them. To subscribe, please contact me (contact information is below or just respond to this email). To unsubscribe at any time, just reply to this email with "unsubscribe" in the subject line. This email list and your name will never be made available to anyone else, not even to others on the list, unless by mutual request and agreement.



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