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August 06, 2019

A Forklift Ran Over My Hanging Sign!

Heather Bundgaard, Account Executive

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “The show must go on.”

Yep, that’s 100% true in the trade show world, but at what expense?

Our job is to make sure “the show must go on” no matter what. We’ve never missed the opening of a show, but that doesn’t mean that even with our extensive pre-show planning nothing unexpected happens…because it does, and it seems like it always happens in the 11th hour (or, so it feels).

Let me tell you about this one time…

BACKSTORY: My client bought an amazing 20x30 booth that included a 30’L x 20’W x 8’H hanging sign. As always, I was supervising the install (with my client at my side). While the riggers were installing the last piece of the frame, I decided to run to the bathroom quickly before they got started on the graphic installation. When I returned, my client smiled at me and said, “You aren’t going to believe me, but the hanging sign was just ran over by a forklift.” I laughed back at him to indicate that I didn’t believe him, but appreciated his sense of humor (we have a fun relationship and joke often).

PROBLEM: However, reality set-in when I turned to see the forklift driver walking towards me saying: “THIS NEVER HAPPENS! I Can’t believe this happened!!” Apparently, in the five minutes I was gone, the frame was ran over by the forklift driver, which caused the frame to flatten and bend where the wheels ran over it. If we hung the sign as-is, it would have been very noticeable since it was a perfect rectangle.

SOLUTION: I ended up getting a mechanic to grab a piece of pipe (you know the pipe-and-drape used to section off inline booths) and retrofitting it to fit together with the rest of the hardware. The solution looked like nothing ever happened.

COST OF THE SOLUTION: That solution cost TradeTec four hours of double-time for four union labor workers (we were installing on Sunday), plus all the hassle of submitting a claim with the show plus getting the actual part manufactured after the show. Remember, TradeTec does not post-show bill our clients, so the client was not responsible for the cost of the mishap.

TradeTec’s motto is to be the “easiest company to work with,” so we strive to overdeliver and continually make our clients’ lives easier. As you can see, “life happens” and it’s how you deal with the unexpected times that make you successful.

Got a challenge you’ve dealt with lately in your trade show world? How did you solve it?

Heather Bundgaard, Account Executive
htb@ttskyline.com | 630.376.1538
Heather’s marketing career started more than 22 years ago with a focus on trade show planning and execution. Her current role as a senior exhibit consultant allows Heather to work with various companies and industries on their trade show needs from design to implementation and asset management. Heather strives to provide the best customer experience, relieve her clients of stress, and prevent wasted time and money.

About TradeTec:

Founded in Chicago in 1999, Skyline TradeTec produces innovative trade show exhibits with unmatched customer service and a promise of NO POST SHOW BILLING™ for clients. As an endorsed provider of Skyline products, TradeTec offers the highest quality modular exhibits and portable displays, as well as custom and hybrid solutions. Skyline TradeTec has 6 locations in 5 states, has served over 6,000 clients, and has completed over 50,000 projects worldwide. Learn more about TradeTec at SkylineTradeTec.com.