Shifting and Changing – A Part of Life

Several years ago (2007-2008) I began to feel a shift, a tugging, a pull away from what I was doing and into a new path.  Our economy was on the decline. My event business at the time, The Laureli Group, Inc., was struggling and I found myself in a place where I had some space.. read more →

Centralize or Diversify?

I am an instructor at San Diego State University’s College of Extended Studies, in their Meeting Planning Certificate Program.  Each semester, I teach a six-hour elective course called, “Starting Your Own Business in the Meeting & Events Industry”.  While most of my students are interested in becoming a meeting or event planner, many of them.. read more →

Discipline or Rhythm?

I recently began graduate school, attending classes on Friday and Saturday every other weekend. Now, I wish I could say that I had the time to focus solely on my studies, but in today’s world (and in mine in particular right now), this isn’t possible. So, I’m learning about how to manage the ebb and.. read more →

Wake Up Call – Does Your Brand Say What It Should?

Last week I attended the IMEX America Conference ( in Las Vegas, which is one of the largest Meetings, Events and Incentive industry conferences in North America.  There were over 8,000 attendees present looking to make important business connections, meet new potential suppliers, network with one another and/or to take part in educational sessions.  The.. read more →

The Future of Hospitality Event and Room Services – Guest Blogger Andrew D. Shrout

Between the internet and social media’s growing presence in our lives and the massive diversity in customers, the hospitality industry must evolve and adapt to new ways of providing service. Consistent and instant communication is a huge factor in gaining new customers, but to keep the customers, hotels must find a way to meet their.. read more →

Remarkable! – Step into Greatness!

I just popped onto the blog of my former employee, Donna Queza, and her new company, Donna and Nailah ( and I loved what I saw!  Their fresh approach to life, their energy and  positive nature (plus their skills) impressed and inspired me.  The most recent blog spoke of their attendance at a conference about.. read more →

Reflections on Giving Thanks

“Thanks.” It’s a word we use all the time. For many of us, it’s an innate part of our lives, programmed since early childhood. The barista hands you your morning coffee – “thanks.” The hostess seats you at your table – “thanks.” Your son picks up his shoes and puts them away – “thanks.” But,.. read more →

The Power of Introspection for Your Business

Recently, I had the opportunity to travel to Scotland as part of a pilgrimage with my church. When I decided to take this journey, my focus was upon spiritual growth and the opportunity to explore the majestic scenery of the country. But, as a business owner, I had concerns about walking away from the business,.. read more →

Perfecting your 30-second Sales Pitch

Have you ever been to a dinner party or networking event and someone asks, “So, what do you do?” I’ve heard recently that asking that question is passé, as we are all so much more than the work we do, right?  Yet, it still gets asked, and we need to be prepared with a response.. read more →

September Means Back to Business for Entrepreneurs

It’s September, which equals cooler days (hopefully), longer nights and back to school! If you’ve long since graduated, September can also be a great time to get back into your business. A long, hot summer can often mean spending time with family, taking vacations and putting your brand on cruise control. But now that we’re.. read more →