Chester Elton named MDCE opening keynote speaker

MINNEAPOLIS — World-renowned leadership guru and New York Times best-selling author Chester Elton has been named Opening Keynote presenter at the 2014 Marine Dealer Conference & Expo in November.

Co-author of several successful leadership books including “All In,” “The Carrot Principle,” and “The Orange Revolution,” Elton is considered an expert in the field of company culture and employee engagement. His research shows that the most successful businesses deliver extraordinary results by developing a team culture in which employees believe what they do matters.

“Leadership was the number-one topic dealers asked for in our pre-MDCE surveys, and there’s no better way to demonstrate leadership skills than by establishing a strong, positive dealership culture,” explains Liz Walz, director of education for the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas, which produces the annual event in partnership with Boating Industry. “The research Chester will share during his Opening Keynote address demonstrates how big an impact such culture can have on a business’ bottom line.”

Elton’s collection of books, which are both New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers, have been translated into more than 30 languages and sold more than a million copies worldwide. His work has been called a “must read for managers” by Larry King of CNN, and he earned the clever moniker “Apostle of Appreciation” by Canada’s largest newspaper, the Globe and Mail.

During Elton’s high-energy keynote presentation entitled “All In: How the Best Managers Create a Culture that Drives Big Results,” attendees will learn real-world strategies to engage, enable and energize their employees, strategies that are proven to boost revenue and profitability for businesses of any size — from mom-and-pop shops to corporate entities. Key take-aways include: Three characteristics of the world’s most profitable team cultures; seven steps today’s most successful managers use to generate employee buy-in; and how any manager can build a culture in which employees give an extra push of effort.

Elton’s message will provide keynote attendees with ways to excite and motivate their employees, which will boost employee morale and translate into a more productive workplace. His methods have been put to good use in his role as leadership consultant to firms such as American Express, Avis Budget Group and Cigna.

“Securing Chester Elton was a big win for MDCE this year,” says Boating Industry editor-in-chief Jonathan Sweet. “It’s through the generous support of exhibitors and sponsors like Smoker Craft, which has sponsored the MDCE Opening Keynote address for several years running, that we are able to enrich the attendee experience by bringing speakers of this quality and prestige to the conference.”

The 2014 MDCE will offer 30 educational sessions in all, the most the event has ever offered, including Elton’s keynote presentation. The conference has traditionally included three educational tracks, but in 2014 the educational programming has expanded for a total of four tracks: Leadership, Sales, Marketing and Service Plus. A Closing Keynote address also has been added for the first time this year.

The MDCE is scheduled for Nov. 16-19 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. It has attracted an increasing number of dealers every year since 2007. In 2013, MDCE featured double-digit growth in dealer attendance, and MRAA’s goal is to grow the event to more than 1,000 dealer attendees.

To learn more about the upcoming MDCE or to register for the event , visit

About the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo
The Marine Dealer Conference & Expo is the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas’ annual conference and member meeting. As the marine industry’s only dealer-specific educational conference, the MDCE offers an in-depth lineup of educational topics, a full-featured expo hall and a series of fixed networking opportunities, all of which are designed to help marine dealers connect with and learn from others who can foster their success. The MDCE is co-produced by MRAA and Boating Industry, and it features pre-conference workshops, opening and closing keynote presentations, four tracks of educational content and 30 sessions in all. It will be held Nov. 16-19 at the Orange County Convention Center and Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Fla. For more information, visit

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