Consigliere, help me out here please.

Gordon Gekko chasing the cash

OK so here’s the second installment of “Craig made us do this ‘cuz he is on vacation and really doesn’t feel like doing it”, er uh, I mean “Guest Blogging”. Like Ron, I am also pretty competitive but I’m confident I can do this without doing too much damage. After all I’m not an IT guy…

Following Ron’s lead, I’m going to give you a glimpse into my role(s) within the Walla organization. My main role is to retain “Corporate Sponsorships”, we’ll start with that. Being a “Sales and Marketing Guy”, it was only natural that the best way for me to contribute was by putting a plan together to solicit money from businesses and make sure it is executed to its greatest ability. Any event that we do requires a significant amount of money to get up and running. The catch is that while we do raise a lot of money during the event, we need to be able to pay for things PRIOR to the event like tents, bands, marketing, insurance (yes, we take a big honkin’ liability policy prior to the events in case you get hurt at our party), the glorious “Porta-Potties” and a lot more that I can’t think of off the top of my head. So for the 2010 summer event scheduled for July 31st, we all start working right after the New Year’s holiday to get things going.

The first thing I do is to put together a “Corporate Sponsor” program that details a number of ways for local businesses to get involved with our event from a monetary perspective. The benefits a Corporate Sponsor would receive for their contribution can range from something as simple as having their company’s banner at the event up to a VIP sponsor package which will include a VIP tent, complimentary food and beverages and more. This sponsor package is then rolled out to all of the volunteers of Walla-Pa-Looza to be able to present to their personal and professional contacts and hopefully retain a sponsor. The money raised from sponsors usually ends up being our operating budget for the event and helps us put it on. This way we can focus on the day of the event to raise as much money possible knowing that the majority of the expenses have been covered already and the rest can go toward doing what it was intended to do: Help others in need.

As for my “other” duties, well those are the same as many of the other volunteers that also may have a “main” duty. This includes things like serving food and drinks, keeping the area clean the day of the event and just making sure everything runs smoothly and everyone has a great time. There is one other duty however that many of us share that is vital, and is one that is not looked at as a duty per se as it was not something assigned, but just sort of happened. It is the role of Craig’s confidant, consigliere, adviser or whatever you want to call it. You see, Craig started this whole thing but quickly found out that it takes an army to put on an event of this size. Although the event bears his name (well, a portion of it anyway), Craig does not like to make any unilateral decisions. He comes up with a lot of great ideas but is great about bouncing them off all of us and getting buy-in and acceptance from the core group. Although we are an official charitable organization (well almost, our “legal stuff” is in process) and have a board etc, there are many discussions about how we will do things before it actually goes to a vote before the board. This is why this organization has been so successful so far – teamwork. If one person tried to do it all, it would have still been a small party for no reason other than to party in some guy’s backyard.

I hope this posting gives you yet another bit of insight in to the group that is responsible for Walla-Pa-Looza. Once again, the common theme here is “You can’t do it alone”. Whether that means fighting a life-threatening disease like cancer, putting on a great fund raiser or just dealing with the day to day. Support from those closest to you is a key factor in being successful at anything, so pay it forward even when it doesn’t seem like it’s coming to you.


  • Nicely done, Nick! :)

    Comment by Wendy — April 5, 2010 @ 8:47 am

  • You do a great job for Walla-pa-Looza. It’s because of people like you that our events are a success! Thanks again for being a great friend.


    Comment by Craig — April 5, 2010 @ 9:49 am

  • I would comment on this, but that would be one comment closer to my 14 comments – and I’m too competitive to do that. Wait – damn. Oh well. Very nicely done Nick. I think this is a really good “behind the scenes” look at what it takes to put Walla on – and I’m sure folks appreciate the transparency.

    Comment by Ron Bieber — April 5, 2010 @ 10:46 am

  • Nice job on the post, bro! We are hoping to make it this year, now that Ashlyn isn’t such a nap-oholic!

    Comment by Terri Jacobs — April 5, 2010 @ 11:26 am

  • Craig should be proud… you and Ron did a great job keeping things moving while he was gone!! Just a thought Nick, in putting together your event sponsorship, how about giving your sponsors some increased visibility on your website. Your blog is bringing in the readers and driving website traffic, sponsors may appreciate a teaser/header promo to increase the value Walla can offer them for their contributions. I’ve been doing just that on my website and it’s been well received.

    Comment by Bobbi — April 5, 2010 @ 4:53 pm

  • [...] as Nick had said I bounce almost everything off of my peers in Walla-pa-looza just to make sure I don’t do stupid [...]

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