Owners Say Employees Key to Success with Trade-Show Circuit

Article excerpt

Byline: Alexandra Gekas Medill News Service

In this electronic age, trade shows are one of the last bastions of a time when people met face-to-face to conduct business.

At least that's how the head of trade-show organizer ROC Exhibitions Inc., of Lisle, sees his work. And so, Mark Rosenstock believes, the key to success for his company is its people.

"The recipe for failure," Rosenstock said, "is where you've grown to the point that you need to hire somebody to deal with the people because you can't."

ROC's customers agree that because the firm's employees are taken care of, they are taken care of, too.

"The company itself must be a good company to work for," said Susan Kennedy, marketing director of ROC customer Sloan Valve Co. of Franklin Park. "I've been working with Kristen (Terry, ROC's vice president) for a long time and it continually means satisfaction."

ROC manages 11 and owns equity positions in nine annual international, national and regional trade shows. The shows focus on a variety of industries: facility management, fire and life- safety, law enforcement and security, telecommunications, electronics manufacturing, food technology, medical engineering, metalworking and construction. …