I’ve always wondered why the statistics of business, especially in the United States, seem to be so sparse. I have a feeling that it is because it is difficult for anyone to compare, to compare themselves to others, or to find out what other people are doing when they are doing the same thing they are doing.
But business statistics are notoriously difficult to collect. And even if you manage to get all the numbers you can get, you still have to understand that the data is only a snapshot of a month’s worth of activities and that the data may be skewed by things like seasonal activity.
To illustrate the point, I looked at the numbers for my own company’s annual conference, the recent annual meeting of the New York Stock Exchange, and then made some comparisons between these.
The numbers are all pretty good for my company, and my own. But I did find a few outliers. For one, the number of people who attended my annual meeting was roughly double the numbers attending the NYC Stock Exchange meeting. I did not find this to be a big deal, so I thought that the data was pretty consistent.
The numbers from my company were also in the top 10% for the amount of people attending at the NYSE meeting. So why is this? I’m not sure, but it might be in part because the NYC Stock Exchange is pretty big for a small company, whereas my company is not. But this could also just be that people who are attending the NYSE think they are attending the annual meeting of their own business.
The NYSE has a lot of other stockholders too. Their annual meeting is one of the largest business events in the world. I don’t know if the data for this, but the number of people attending the NYSE meeting is at least five times as high as the number of people attending the annual meeting of my company. The numbers for my company are also quite consistent in that they are at the top of the overall list of people attending the annual meeting of my company.
So if this is true, and this is just the beginning of the numbers of people attending the annual meeting of NYSE, then it’s only a matter of time before someone starts asking me about the numbers of people attending my own company’s annual meeting. I do have to admit though, that my company’s annual meeting is the most boring, uneventful, and uninteresting to the point of being downright boring, annual meeting that I have attended outside of business school.
The thing is, this is the first year that I can find the numbers of people attending my annual meeting, but not the number of people attending my company’s annual meeting. This was a bit surprising to me since I had thought that I had attended both meetings once a year.
The most important thing about an annual meeting is the people who attend it. Business schools are famous for having lots of MBA students attend their meetings as a form of networking. These are the people who will be the managers of your company (and future managers) for the next decade or so. At the same time, the annual meeting is the place where all the important decisions about your company are made.
The annual meeting is also where you talk to the top executives in your industry for a while. There are many meetings that are not annual meetings, but are still important. For example, there was a meeting where we discussed when we should start advertising in our industry.