Mike Walter


Mike Walter




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Students As Employees – A Great Solution

January 10, 2008 by Mike Walter
Last week I told you how ideal I think students are (High School Seniors to College aged) as new additions to your staff. This week I give you the good news: There's no easier demographic to find and recruit!Let's talk about finding them first. There are easy avenues to take to get your message out to a student body that you are a DJ company looking for new recruits. First, most schools have newspapers. These are typically inexpensive publications to advertise in. Also, many schools (colleges specifically) have bulletin boards where you can post "Help Wanted" flyers for free. Add to that the fact that if you are DJing a High School Dance, you've already got them in front of you and there's nothing wrong with approaching some of the more outgoing students and telling them they'd make a great DJ. So if it's a c... [read more]
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U2 Can Hire Great Recruits

January 10, 2008 by Mike Walter
Before you read this article, dig out your copy of U2's "Rattle and Hum" CD. You've still got that from back in the day, right? Pop it in and cue up track 3. Hit play when I tell ya . . . There are few things in this business that I love more than the weeks after we start an active recruitment push. The phones are ringing, I'm getting to meet tons of new people and my imagination is running wild with possibilities. I read a quote once that said, "I know there is an ocean because I've seen the river." What that quote meant to me was how exciting it is to witness "potential." How great it is to meet a new person and imagine what they can become in this industry. That's one of the things that really psyches me up as a Multi-Op owner. I've come to accept the fact that not all potential is realized. Not ever... [read more]
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The Best Trainees Have Class

December 5, 2007 by Mike Walter
I have spent the better part of two months now listing some great careers that you should consider recruiting from. Teachers, sales people, waiters and waitresses all have the potential to make awesome entertainers and great additions to your staff.Today I would like to talk about the area where I love to find good, fresh young talent the most: Schools. I think students, specifically High School Senior to College Sophomores make the ideal recruit, assuming of course that they fit your mold with the right personality and physical traits. First, the age for me is ideal. If I can get a person on staff in their late teens who is already attending (or planning to go to) a local College, I can teach them how to DJ and show them this great part time career and I know I'll have them for a good 4-6 years. They'l... [read more]
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Rules & Regulations Meetings

November 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
This week we had our annual Rules and Regulations Meeting. This is a monthly meeting that I run every year in either May or June. My reasoning is twofold: We've hired some new people and though I hand everyone a copy of "Elite Entertainment Rules and Regulations" when they are hired, who really knows if they read the two-page document? Plus, for our veterans, it can't hurt to do a brush up about the basics of working here at Elite as we dive into the deep end of the pool (that is, the busy season here in the North-East.)What I do at this meeting is hand everyone a copy of the document and then read through it point by point. I'll answer questions if anyone has any, make comments on certain sections and generally drive home the most important points. The document is sorta like the US Constitution, it's a li... [read more]
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Are Your Endings Memorable?

November 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
Being a big Sopranos fan I was glued to the TV this past Sunday night and like almost everyone else I know, I had my own theories of how this historic television series was going to end. Would Tony flip or get arrested? Or would the Brooklyn crew (or worse, a friend from within his own crew) finally whack him?If you were one of the 11 million viewers who saw it, or if you haven't been living under a rock all week, you know that the ending wasn't really an ending. After a tense build up of a scene, with Tony and his family gathering in a local restaurant surrounded by menacing looking characters and the familiar strains of Steve Perry belting our "Don't Stop Believing," the screen just went blank. It's an ending that has left many people feeling disappointed and let down. I have even heard some people say they... [read more]
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Just Say No – New Year’s Resolutions

November 10, 2007 by Mike Walter
First let me begin this article by wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year. And if I may, for one week, I'd like to pause in my pursuit of covering all possible angles to recruit new DJs from to talk briefly about what I consider to be one of the biggest hoaxes in our society: The New Year's Resolution. Here's the problem with New Year's Resolutions as I see them: They are too closely tied to New Year's Day. Now that might seem silly. Why would a New Year's Resolution be tied to anything but the New Year right? But think about it: most people resolve to make a change in their life for the better (stop smoking, lose weight, start exercising etc) and they tie it to the date of January 1st. But the problem is, most of us wake up tired and hung-over on January 1st and then it's a Holiday so we ove... [read more]
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Business Is A Marathon

October 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
I recently started training for my next marathon after a month off. I ran a little during that month but without a strict training program to tell me "Run 4 miles on Tuesday" and "Do Hill Work on Wednesday" I took more days off then I ran and I generally relaxed and put on a coupla pounds. So last Monday, 18 weeks before my next 26 miler, I started a new training program. And to kick it off I decided to put a book that had been recommended to me on my iPod® and run with that for a few days. The book is a classic "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen Covey and though I am only about an hour into the audio book (2 runs worth) I have already heard some great things. The person who recommended the book told me he listens to it every year and I can see why. It's rich in common sense and good, unive... [read more]
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Your Customer Service

October 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
I wrote an article a few weeks ago that some people have commented to me about. I appreciate any kind of feedback about these articles so thank you to everyone who reached out.I told a story about John and Sue Park, the couple that owns the Dry Cleaners I frequent. Sue is out on pregnancy leave and I had a less then desirable experience dropping off clothes to their replacement person. The experience made me think about (and write about) how important it is to teach customer service to your staff but I really didn't go into any details of how to do this. So I went back and found some notes for a Monthly Meeting that I have run in the past. This will be the topic of my meeting next month and if you hold regular meetings with your staff, I highly recommend driving this point home to your crew as well. I a... [read more]
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Feeling Patriotic

October 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
I got into it the other day with one of my DJs. He was complaining about a variety of things and I did my best to keep my cool while he ranted about, among other things, "only" having eight events this August. I tried to calmly point out that even though eight was down from his August last year, he had blocked off an entire weekend this year which kind of affected our opportunity to book him.He didn't exactly see how those dots were connected. Then he got to another point of contention, that he was booked on a lower end event on one of those Saturdays in August. My DJs get paid on a sliding scale, based on what the event was booked for. So, for example, on this night he was making $300 as opposed to an event that might pay him twice that. And in one of those beautiful, clairvoyant moments, I stepped out... [read more]
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Why Bring Your Crew to a Conference

September 25, 2007 by Mike Walter
So I just back from the International DJ Expo in Atlantic City and, as usual, following an industry convention I am fired up and recharged. But instead of talking about how I feel, I'd like to focus this article on my staff and how attending these Expos together are beneficial for us as a group.First of all, the sense that we are a "family" is always strengthened when we go to a convention. At my advanced age (41 ... ack!) I don't often go out and party with my crew, certainly not as much as I used to ten years ago. But at a convention, even when I have a seminar to deliver the next day, there's too much going on for me to be in my room by 10pm. So what happens, and what happened last week specifically, is I get to hang with my DJs. Last week we were at Jay Z's 40/40 club one night, partying at the Casbah in ... [read more]