LAST CHANCE: Submit Grant Review Questions by Monday

I am not even going to attempt to top Scott’s A Few Good Men parody from last week. I briefly considered re-enacting this classic scene from Billy Madison, but then reconsidered upon reflecting that perhaps not everyone has as much appreciation of the oeuvre of Adam Sandler as I do.

On to other things. We have had a really nice response to our call for questions for our “Why Did My Grant Request Get Rejected?” panel with 20+ questions submitted thus far. We’re setting a deadline of end of day on Monday, August 24 for question submissions. If you have a question for our panel, please submit it by then. You can do so below.

Are we clear?


CMEpalooza Channels “A Few Good Men”

When Derek sent over his most recent post for me to rewrite entirely (I am nice and often just claim I “edit” his work), I was in a punchy mood. That’s what happens when you work from home and your closest conversation buddy is a Phillie Phanatic pillow.

Anyway, Derek asked people to submit questions for our upcoming CMEpalooza Fall session entitled “Why Did My Grant Request Get Rejected?” (incidentally, still plenty of time to submit yours by going here) and what follows is the first thing I thought of.

Maybe you’ll laugh. Maybe you won’t. Just don’t ask me to act out the scene. It’s been done poorly by too many others too many times. Just imagine the voices in your head.

You want answers?

I think I’m entitled.

You want answers?!

I want the truth!

You can’t handle the truth! Son, we live in a world where grant requests get rejected every day. The education of an industry… no, the future of medicine and the health of the world is in my hands. I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. Who’s gonna educate our current and future healthcare workers? You, McGowan? You, Perez?

The truth is that you don’t want to know why your grant request got rejected because deep down in those places you don’t talk about at the Alliance meeting, you know that your gaps were flimsy, your educational design was laughable, and your outcomes were unmeasurable.

In our world, we use words like “needs assessment,” “quality improvement,” and “Level 7 outcomes.” We use these words as the backbone of a life improving patient outcomes. You use them as a punchline for CME knock knock jokes.

I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who supports his family thanks to my funding his $75,000 grant request. I would rather you just filed your outcomes report and reconciliation on time and be on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you fund your own educational activities. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to.

Next month: We recreate one of the most memorable scenes from “Alf”  when we ask you to complete a brief survey or two from some of our other Fall panels.

CMEpalooza Survey: Submit Your Questions For Our Grant Review Panel

Our 10 a.m. ET session at CMEpalooza Fall is titled “Why Did My Grant Request Get Rejected?” which, I think, is pretty direct and self-explanatory. Our panel’s goal for this session is to answer as many of your questions as possible about the grant review process. In order to do so, we would love to try and get a bunch of questions from the CME community ahead of time so we can see some of the common themes and know how to best prepare our panelists. We really want this to be a participant-driven session and our panel will do their best to directly address as many of the questions as they can.

If you have ever had a question about the grant review process — be it about the budget, application, outcomes, etc. — now is your chance to ask it. Just fill out the (extremely) simple survey below. And no, smart guy, your question cannot be “Why did my grant request get rejected?”

New Session Added & Other CMEpalooza Fall Announcements

The blog’s been a bit quiet lately as we took a little break due to summer vacation schedules and Scott’s rigorous touring schedule as the sixth member of One Direction. However, I’m thrilled to be back in the blogging saddle to announce PlatformQ as our latest CMEpalooza Fall Gold Sponsor! PlatformQ is sponsoring our lunchtime session (lunch on the east coast, breakfast on the west coast) which is titled Expanding the Focus: Patient Education from CME Providers. We’ve put together an excellent panel for this session and I think it should be a fascinating discussion. You can read more details about this session and the rest of the agenda on our CMEpalooza Fall agenda page.

While we’re on the topic of our sponsors, please allow me a brief moment to acknowledge and thank our new and returning sponsors:



Please visit our sponsor page to find out more about each of these companies. For more information on becoming a CMEpalooza sponsor, please check out our sponsorship prospectus.

The Skinny on CMEpalooza Company Spotlights

Last week, we hosted our inaugural CMEpalooza Company Spotlight, gathering four employees from Educational Measures for a moderated discussion highlighting the company’s current work and the services they provide, and offering a glimpse into the future of audience response and engagement technology.

A week later, the Spotlight broadcast has been viewed by close to 100 individuals, including 33 who watched the live iteration.

I hear what you are saying, “100 people! That’s it? I could post a video of my cat sleeping for 5 minutes and I’d get 10,000 views in an hour!” And that’s probably true.

But Company Spotlights aren’t videos designed for quick entertainment. People who watched the live version of our 30-minute Spotlight broadcast watched for an average of nearly 20 minutes (engagement among those who watched the enduring version was somewhat less). That’s tells me that a good number of CME folks watched and learned about Educational Measures. Every one of them is a potential customer.

Can Derek or I guarantee that any of those viewers will lead to business? Guarantee? No. Hope? Of course.

Is this broadcast going to be more effective than spending 3 days in an exhibit hall, flying in a team to stand there and pray for traffic? We’d like to think so, but we’re biased. It’s just a different sort of approach, that’s for sure.

So why are we telling you all this? Why should you care?

It’s simple. We want to do more of these. And we think it’s a real opportunity for companies to expose themselves in an innovative way to potential funders and partners in the CME community.

Think about how much time and effort it takes just to get just one individual with any sort of decision making power to talk to you about your company. We’re talking days of emails and/or phone calls, scheduled and rescheduled appointments… all for 30 minutes of face time. With a CMEpalooza Company Spotlight, you get the undivided attention of dozens of people who have taken time out of their day to learn about you for far less effort and energy.

Alas, this is not a free service we are offering, so there is a value proposition that you need to consider. Organizations in the CME space are notoriously stingy about spending money on marketing. We are a face-to-face community, by and large. Catalogs and mailers and email blast campaigns simply don’t work in our field.

But when Derek and I brainstormed the seeds of Company Spotlights, we hoped we had hit upon a unique niche idea that solved a fundamental problem among CME-focused organizations – getting needed publicity without being obnoxiously and overtly pushy. At the very least, we hope it’s something you think about as you consider where your organization is going this year and into the future. We created a separate tab on the CMEpalooza website to host all of our spotlights, and it’s looking a bit lonely right now.

Maybe you are unveiling something unique that you want to promote. Maybe you just want everyone to know that you have talented people doing something better than anyone else. We’ll work with you on the agenda for your Spotlight so that it’s not obnoxious marketing but instead, an informational session that lets you show off your best side.

We have all the information you’ll need to see the ins and outs of these Spotlights right here. Or email/call us – we’re helpful people. Usually.

Hijinks and Hoopla at CMEpalooza Company Spotlight

Crazy things happen when the CMEpalooza Company Spotlight turns on.

People lose their train of thought, reduced to bumbling idiots (or in Derek’s case, more of a bumbling idiot). They tell you about things they wouldn’t dare tell anyone at a cocktail party (“Um, what’s a CME?”). You just don’t know.

Now that we’ve piqued your interest, come join us at noon today for our inaugural company spotlight when we throw the team from Educational Measures under the microscope to learn about ways they are using their technologies to improve the delivery of CME in a variety of settings.

Just swing on over to the LIVE tab on the website to watch the live broadcast. As with our typical CMEpalooza sessions, you’ll be able to ask questions of our panelists during the broadcast and be dazzled with our fancy wardrobes.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye… Behold the CMEpalooza Fall Agenda

Put down your grog of ale for a moment and listen up lads and lassies!

It’s taken a little bit longer than we had hoped, but Derek and I are thrilled to finally be able to present to everyone our CMEpalooza Fall agenda. We took into account feedback we had received from past Palooza participants and tried hard to come up with an interesting mix of topics and faculty. Needless to say, we are tickled with what we’ve been able to put together.

Here is what you’ll find on Wednesday, October 21:

  • Six 1-hour panel sessions, with 1 more open lunchtime slot for a second Gold sponsor to join Genentech (if you are interested in becoming that second Gold sponsor, the details on how to do so are here)
  • Lots of fresh faces to CMEpalooza. While there are a couple folks who will be back for a second or third time around, we’ve mostly tried to bring in new people with a new perspective on the world of CME. We’ve even got an international contingent (if you consider Canada to be international)
  • Several new formats, including the inaugural CMEpalooza Pecha Kucha (what’s a Pecha Kucha, you ask? An exotic tropical fruit, perhaps?)
  • Sessions aimed at folks who work in various settings, including hospitals and hospital systems, member associations, and more.

We’ll be checking in regularly over the next few months with updates on each session, video interviews, learner polls, and other cool things. In the meantime, we’re taking a nap.

CMEpalooza Fall Agenda Coming Soon (We Promise)

I’m not lying — it is coming soon. We’ve got our top interns working on it as I type. Look — here’s one proofreading Scott’s work.

On the other hand, the guy we hired to work with all our faculty has been slacking off lately. Here he is supposedly following-up with everyone involved in our CME Pecha Kucha.


I mean, Miller Chill? Gross. He could have at least gone with a microbrew.

Anyway, we hope to have the agenda up on the website within the next week or two. We’re just finalizing a few things and then we should be good to make it all public. In the meantime, don’t forget about our first CMEpalooza Company Spotlight coming up next week on Wednesday, June 24 from noon-12:30 p.m. ET with Educational Measures in the spotlight. Scott will be leading the proceedings, but I’ve seen the agenda and it should be an interesting conversation, especially for those of you interested in the use of technology in education. Join us!


Our First Company Spotlight — Wednesday, June 24

As I am sure everyone remembers — or at least the 12 of you who tuned in — a few weeks ago we had a suspense-laden drawing to coincide with the launch of the latest addition to our online family, the CMEpalooza Company Spotlight. At the headquarters of Educational Measures — our winner — we’re told there were champagne corks a-popping, fireworks a-bursting, and high fives a-slapping (or was it just a muted “Oh goody”? I can’t keep these things straight).

Anyway, we’re excited to announce that we’ve agreed upon the date and time for the first of hopefully many Company Spotlights… Wednesday, June 24 from noon-12:30 p.m. ET.

I am sure a lot of you are scratching your heads wondering why exactly you’ll want to tune in and what exactly we’ll be talking about. And while I won’t give away too many secrets, as with all of the Company Spotlights we’ll hopefully be broadcasting (your organization can get one of your own by going here), the focus will be on the cool kinds of things our featured company is involved in. So for Educational Measures, you’ll probably hear about how audience response technology is evolving, the right way (and the wrong way) to take advantage of the technology they provide, and how they are changing to meet the shifting needs and wants of today’s learners.

Rest assured this is not a capabilities presentation. While there surely is a promotional element to it, our goal is to highlight the cool and interesting things Educational Measures is involved in and not to bore anyone with slides and numbers and company-speak. I’ll be moderating (Derek will probably be there in the background looking like a schlub, as usual) to make sure we touch upon topics that our community will be interested in hearing about. There will be opportunities for our audience to ask questions as well, just like in our other CMEpalooza events.

While we hope you can join us live, each Company Spotlight will also endure on our website, as well as YouTube for anyone who wants to check it out once the camera lights blinks red (ie, I hit the “End broadcast” button).

Wednesday, June 24. Noon ET. Tell your friends.

CMEpalooza Spring Infographic

Yay, data!!!

[does “Happy Data” dance]

[looks around]

[realizes he’s the only one doing a “Happy Data” dance in the coffee shop]

[sheepishly sits back down]

Now that we have that out of the way…hey, check out our new CMEpalooza Spring Infographic! Am I thrilled beyond words that 7 of 8 sessions have received over 150 views in the first month? Yes — yes I am. Am I a little disappointed that we only got 71 responses to our viewer survey? Meh — I’m not surprised. As always, I’m just thrilled that people take the time from their busy schedules to watch our sessions. Anything beyond that is a bonus.

A huge thank you to infograph-ed for once again putting this together for us. If you have a moment, please stop by their website to check out all their fantastic work.

And now, on to the infographic.