It’s often said that an entrepreneur’s light never goes out, and that their online and offline signs remain on “Open” around the clock. Well, I was given the distinct privilege to experience that after receiving an invitation to speak at the 72 Hours of Power Business Retreat held Feb. 6 to Feb. 8 at the Victory Ridge Retreat Center in Ellicott City, Md..
After arriving on the premises around 3 p.m., I was greeted with a warm welcome from the host team and notified that I had about 90 minutes before presenting my topic, “Media, Meet Your Match: Magnifying Your Brand For Marketplace Momentum.”
After the retreat, I had the opportunity to catch up with the “mega-minds” behind this revolutionary model of how entrepreneurs learn, share, uplift, inspire, empower and yes, transact with one another. I found it to be remarkably unique in its presentation, and value-overloaded in its execution.
Here’s what Trevor Otts (@TrevorOtts), vice president of marketing and automation, and Che Brown (@CheBrownSales), vice president of sales and operations of the Peak Performers Institute had to share about the event:
What spawned the vision to host 72 Hours of Power?
Our vision was inspired and motivated by the need to provide a cost-effective platform for African American speakers that would offer the opportunity to reach a national and international audience. It was also a priority that our live-stream viewers and in-person attendees have an opportunity to build their businesses. Exposure and access is the key to building a successful business, and this is exactly what we provide.
The story of 72 Hours of Power resembles the movie ‘The Nutty Professor’ or in this case, nutty professors in the persons of Che Brown and Trevor Otts. As a duo of sales and marketing, we decided to experiment and challenge the conference paradigm from the mundane predictable process of travel and hearing speaker after speaker, but leaving with a bag full of stuff and a confused mind on what to do next.
Like any inventor and originator, we asked the simple question, “What if?” What if we put on a conference where learning was continuous 24 hours a day, and furthermore an entrepreneurial experience that lasted 72 hours straight where each speaker provided clear next steps, actionable directives for the participants and a roadmap on how they could create their own success. We asked, “Is it possible to increase their learning stamina to increase their results?” If we placed them in full immersion over a focused span of time, what breakthroughs and new realities in the professional and personal development spaces could occur?” We knew were on to something groundbreaking, and we solidified our why. But the real question was—how? Our minds began to meld with the possibility of having:
- 100 instructors willing to teach at non-conventional times like 3:30am (yes, in the morning!)
- Each trainer required to conduct PowerTalks /Training Sessions
- Attendees/instructors committing to the same levels of sacrifice to ensure success
- Full transparency as it pertains to challenges you faced in your business
- Real-time access via table top conversation (teach with them, eat with them concept)
- Servant leader approach and mindset (serve first, sell last mentality)
This revolutionary experience plunged entrepreneurs into a success driven, interactive environment where attendees go through a detoxification that leaves them holistically empowered in both their personal and professional lives.
What was the overall objective?
72 Hours of Power was to create a 3-day event that would be available for local attendees and streamed online to the rest of the world. Our virtual platform has the latest technology by which our presenters are able to do this, creating opportunities for the viewers to connect, collaborate, and build relationships with the speakers.
What made this event so intriguing that it drew mega-successful, thriving and aspiring business owners, authors, coaches, and speakers from all over the country?
We are now in a new era, the rise of the “Impactpreneur.” They generously share their gift because they are committed to the idea of making a profit and making an impact on those whom they serve. They show up because they want move their thoughts, ideas, principles, and businesses beyond a logo or slogan. Our platform uniquely created the capacity to speak to over 30,000 people via the live streaming channel. We have the largest online audiences of African Americans utilizing our virtual platform.
Che, what has been a defining moment for you?
Realizing that the availability of the best technology would mean that we no longer had barriers as to how many people we could help and accepting the incredible responsibility of offering the best trainings from high quality speakers to our audience.
Trevor, what has been a defining moment for you?
Reflecting on the first night of our debut 72 Hours of Power event in 2012, Che and I made a statement that we weren’t going anywhere until they (the online viewers) did. At midnight, 2am, 5am, the audience was still there! Day after day, approaching nearly 72 hours, they were still there! It was unbelievable! My eyes filled with tears, as I never imagined such an impact and at that moment I realized that “an entrepreneur’s light is never out.” We encountered all types of obstacles, such as the studio lights burned so long that they caught on fire while streaming LIVE but we kept going. Some speakers didn’t show, but we kept going. Why, because they were depending on us therefore, failure was not an option. Every year, we’ve honored that commitment.
What has been the most talked about buzz from attendees?
Onsite attendees constantly commented on how they were able to connect with the presenters, coaches and entrepreneurs and have profitable conversations. The feedback from online listeners has been phenomenal. People were able to get access to the critical business lessons that could set them up for success. Our virtual audience, which reached over 10,000, stayed connected for the entire 72 hours of broadcasting. Most onsite attendees liked the type of collaboration that happens without perpetual digital interference (i.e., mobile phone, TV and Wi-Fi.) They loved how their communication changes and how their relationship building accelerated, besides that’s what networking is truly about. They found their voice and embraced their vision.
Where do you both think that 72 Hours of Power is heading in the future?
When you digitize your business, it truly becomes unlimited. We are leading the way for speakers, coaches and trainers in that area. We are already in the planning stages for the 2016 72 Hours of Power. However, we facilitate Hyper Immersion Model style programs for other conferences around the world throughout the year. This model revolutionizes the way conferences are done. Eventually, we’d like to see 1,000 thought leaders and experts facilitating at our annual event reaching over 13 million global professionals. We envision setting up 72 Hour Pop-Up Universities and becoming the #1 destination for entrepreneurs, speakers, coaches, professionals and authors globally. Our strategic objective is to expand beyond facilitators and students to collaborations with brands that entrepreneurs and professionals depend on such as American Express, Google, Dell, Chase, Infusionsoft, and Microsoft.
For more information about this event and speakers, visit 72HoursofPower.com.
Roz A. Gee consults and speaks as The Brand Empowerment Agent™ and CEO of The Rated Gee Agency (www.RatedGee.com), A Brand Empowerment Company that offers service sectors in Brand Identity and Development, Brand Messaging, Media Relations and Speaking/Training. Roz has masterfully mixed over 20 years of cumulative experience and has worked for industry titans including General Electric, AT&T, AOL, IBM, SAP/Sybase and Northrop Grumman. Connect with her on Twitter: @RozAGee and Facebook: RozAGee.