For exhibit and event professionals  

How do I turn it on during off times?

August 6, 2013 By Editor

Turn it OffI’ve been at trade shows nonstop for the past three months. Now that my show schedule is winding down, I find it difficult to stay focused and productive. How do other exhibit managers stay on task during the off-season?

— Lucille, exhibit marketer

Make the most of the time you have

Lucille, the off-season is always shorter than you think. So, use this brief respite productively and creatively. What does that mean?

Our readers say:

  • Get ready for the busy times ahead.
  • Do the stuff you never have time to do.
  • Give your brain a rest.

Get ready for the busy times ahead

Julie Rowell, trade show director at Equifax, finds that downtime is a great time to prepare for the future.

“I utilize the time to revise and/or update show reports and budgets. I also meet with my trade show vendor and review the first half of the year and prepare for the last half.”

Do the stuff you never have time to do

With your busy schedule, you probably put off some things until later, when you get a chance. Now’s the chance you’ve been waiting for to get them done.

An anonymous reader suggests some loose ends to tie up.

“Clean your desk. Finalize your budgets and expenses, and follow up on recent shows. Print out your fall schedule. Plus, create to-do lists and timelines for the bigger shows to provide direction.”

Give your brain a rest

With all the paperwork, meetings with vendors and traveling you do, you deserve a mental vacation. Not only will it leave you more refreshed, it can produce unexpected results.

Deborah R. Herr of Deborah Herr Marketing wants you to let your mind wander — for a good reason.

“It’s time to get creative, and the best way to do that is to let your mind drift away from day-to-day tasks. Your best ideas are already in your right (creative) brain. Just let them tumble out in the slow season.”


  • Having lunch with a vendor or two and/or some of her internal clients would give Lucille the opportunity to interact with these individuals in a relaxed atmosphere. This could, in turn, improve how they work together during the crunch times. Lucille could also use her break to browse the Internet to check out new trends in the industry and what her major competitors may have up their sleeves for the event/exhibit season ahead.

    How do you spend your time during off times? Do you have other ways you use these breaks to your advantage?

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