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Monday, August 08, 2011

LPL Takes Chicago

Reported by Sean Hanna, Editor in Chief

The mutual fund sales world has descended on Chicago, replacing the hipsters from Lollapalooza. Some 1,100 fund representatives from roughly 170 fund firms are gathering at McCormick Place in Chicago to mix and mingle with 2,600 LPL reps and 350 home office employees.

LPL chairman and CEO Mark Casady addresses the audience.

photo courtesy of LPL
Tonight is LPL night at Wrigley Field. Fundsters will take the party to the ball park tonight to watch the Cubs play the Washington Nationals. Fund sponsors are renting the rooftop apartment bleachers overlooking the field and will host advisors who want to take in a game. Invesco will have a raffle drawing this afternoon at 3:00 p.m. CT and the lucky LPL advisor will throw out the first pitch.

Dubbed focus11, the conference kicked off at 5:30 p.m. yesterday with a welcome reception featuring a performance by John Mellencamp.

This morning, LPL CEO Mark Casady rang the Nasdaq opening bell from the conference stage. Casady pushed the button flanked by LPL executives and advisors.

Eisner on the Wonders of Micro Management



Former Walt Disney Company CEO Michael Eisner took the stage as the keynote speaker this morning. The theme of his talk was the wonders of micro management and minding the details to hone your brand. To illustrate, he pointed to the example set by Steve Jobs and Warren Buffett and narrated his own experiences.

Michael Eisner

Eisner then played Circle of Life, the theme song from Lion King, and the song shifted through dozens of languages from Greek to Korean to Hebrew to Norwegian. He had to find singers with the right vocal qualities for each language, which took micro managing.

"This is how you mind the dots and build your brand," said Eisner.

He also used the Sunday in the Park painting made from dots as his metaphor. He told the audience that failure is necessary and that one bad dot won't ruin the painting. One has to just fix it and move on.

Eisner also dubbed the current era the "decade of melancholy." The challenge, he said, is how to survive through sad times. 

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