"What Can BISG Do To Help?"
Monday, March 26, 2018
Posted by: Brian O'Leary
In the office, Maya and I are excited to be working on the BISG annual meeting of members, scheduled for April 27 at the Harvard Club of New York. If you’re thinking the timing is different, you’re right. This year, the meeting moves from September to April, so that members can vote on a new slate of directors and the FY2019 budget before the next fiscal year begins in July.
The change in date also gives us a chance to celebrate the best thinking across the book industry supply chain, at a time when spring has truly sprung. Over the last two years, quite a lot has changed at BISG, and much of what is new and different will be on display at the annual meeting.
We’re returning to the Harvard Club with the program theme we introduced last fall, “State of the Supply Chain”, which we will explore through three panel discussions targeted at publishing, distribution, and retailing. Each discussion will look at the issues and opportunities in these key segments, followed by the important question: “What can BISG do to help?”
The publishing panel includes Peter Balis (John Wiley & Son), Stephanie Kendall (Pearson), and Kent Watson (PubWest). Our content structure committee chair, Bill Kasdorf, will lead a conversation about the challenges faced by professional, educational, and trade publishers in the U.S. market.
For distribution, supply chain committee co-chair Ted Hill will moderate a discussion that includes Joe Matthews (Independent Publishers Group), Eric Green (Bibliographic Data Services), Steve Potash (OverDrive), and Dane Neller (On Demand Books). You’re sure to hear four distinct views on the distribution part of book publishing, and you’re also sure to see at least one panelist wear some distinctive socks.
The retailing discussion includes Oren Teicher (American Booksellers Association), David Barker (Readerlink), and Noah Genner (Booknet Canada). All three panelists work closely with retailers throughout North America, and their perspectives will help shape what BISG does in the coming year to better support bookselling (and booksellers).
As rich as those discussions will be, there is more. We’re planning a lunchtime conversation with some folks we’ve come to call “the publishing optimists”, good examples of what remains exciting about book publishing. Look for more on that shortly.
And, we’re recognizing some deserving individuals with our industry awards, including the Lifetime Service Award and the Industry Champion Award. You’ll hear more about the Lifetime Service Award next week, and the Industry Champion will be announced at the annual meeting.
Finally, there is the ‘annual meeting’ part of the annual meeting. Beyond the votes on directors and a budget, the annual meeting gives us a chance to talk about what we’ve accomplished over the past two years.
We have a clear mission, a new vision, a consistent set of objectives, a robust set of strategies, committees working to solve the problems that affect two or more parts of the supply chain, and a content plan that brings BISG to the community three dozen times in 2018. But they are all built to answer one question: “What can BISG do to help?”