This week Affiliate Summit East 2014 took place in New York City. I wasn’t able to attend. Of course, the conference is great and some of the team was there to meet with existing clients, network and hopefully, come home with some new client leads.

So, why didn’t I attend? Well, first let me say that the event is amazing and I have always gotten a lot out of being there. The face-to-face time with others in the industry is priceless. But still, there is much work to do back here at HQ. I wasn’t holding down the fort, per se, but I was overseeing a variety of huge undertakings that our company is embarking on.

New projects take time, planning, effort and most importantly – correct execution.  We are hard at work prepping to launch some new initiatives. The more simple things are to use for clients and affiliates, the more complex it is on the back end. Believe me, it takes a lot of infrastructure work to make things seem so simple and easy.  In addition, many of these involve complex, strategic partnerships and when multiple parties are involved things don’t always move as quickly as predicted.

I’ve cut back a lot on my conference travel schedule this year. I don’t want to be a slave to feelings of missing out. But I really don’t need to be at every event. If I was, I wouldn’t have time to do my job of thinking about the big picture for our agency.

Yes, there are things I miss out on by skipping some conference.  But I also have recommitted to making more on-site visits to clients’ offices.  Those trips have proven to be very valuable in our deeper understanding of our clients and their respective businesses.

Continuing to improve a business and deliver the best possible service, means focusing on the things that matter most. Focus, prioritizing and execution are now at the top of my list.