Recap: Debt Connection Symposium (DCS) & Expo 2014 – Las Vegas

DCS2014In this blog, two National List Members, Anthony Rodriguez and Todd Gurstel, report on their experiences at DCS, held recently in Las Vegas at the Red Rock Hotel.

The National List held a drawing for the DCS registration fee for NL attorney members who wanted to attend DCS 2014 but weren’t registered yet. Rudy Gaba, Jr, and his firm, GABA Law Corporation, was selected. Rudy chose his Collections Manager, Anthony Rodriguez, to attend for the firm.

Anthony Rodriguez’s Recap:

First of all, I would like to thank The National List for sending us to the DCS 2014 Conference in Las Vegas. I was able to meet new potential clients and to see what new products are out there to help improve our collections. It was in a great location, and the speakers were all interesting.

The sessions I attended are as follows:

  • Impacts of Regulations: This interesting session consisted of a panel that helped me to better understand the current regulations and their impact on our collection business.
  • Expo Hall: Visiting the Expo Hall was a great way to network with vendors and other collection agencies, and to learn more about new products to improve collections.
  • Round Table Sessions: This was one of my favorite parts of the conference. It consisted of 10 thirty-minute sessions, repeated three times. Attendees could choose which three to attend. I chose to attend:
    • Collection Coaching – Ideas for the Front Line Manager gave me some really good insights as to how other agency/firm collection managers work. It was valuable to hear about not only the problems they have, but also the best way to tackle them.
    • Setting Up a Complaint Management System gave me a better understanding of how other companies run their complaint management system and what else we could be doing. After discussing “What is a compliant?”, we were given helpful tips on creating a CMS that will effectively track consumer feedback and help us make adjustments to our business practices, as needed.
    • Avoiding the Pendulum Swing—Balancing Financial Performance with Compliance, was led by Brian Spruiell, USAA Federal Savings Bank. He was a great speaker. It was very interesting to learn what USAA expects from their agencies.

The “Totally Rad 80’s Bowl- A-Rama” was a fun way of kicking off the last night and a great networking event. All the people that were at the conference were very nice and helpful, especially to a first timer like myself. I would recommend that anyone in the debt collection industry try to make it to DCS next year. (Next year, the conference moves to Austin, TX.)

Anthony Rodriguez, GABA Law Corporation,

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Todd Gurstel of Gurstel Chargo PA, has been an NL member for more than 15 years. He also attended DCS-2014 and was kind enough to share his conference experiences with NL and our readers, as well. 

Todd Gurstel’s Recap:

The DCS Conference has been become a yearly essential ritual for me. Over the years, the contacts made and business obtained have proved to be invaluable to our firm. I am able to interact with clients not available at other conferences. In addition, the networking events and organized social interaction is unmatched. This year was no exception.

I set up my meetings and meals before the conference. The Red Rock Hotel is located off the strip, making it an excellent venue for networking. This year I specifically focused on attending some of the sessions and speakers. One absolute blow-away experience was the keynote speech given by Commander Kirk Lippold, USN (Ret), legendary Commander of the USS Cole and author of the book Front Burner. He gave us a detailed, minute-by-minute recital of what actually happened.

The other speakers were the usual excellent presentations, with lots of take-aways for our firm, especially in the area of vendor selection and management. Through the social programs, I was able to interact with my clients and friends in a manner that no other conference affords. Finally, this is THE conference for interaction with vendors, as it provides networking opportunities to speak to them outside of the traditional booth settings.

In addition to the unmatched pool and bowling party, a number of the vendors threw suite parties on the top floor of the hotel, allowing all the vendors and prospective clients to come up and interact. This proved to be an excellent opportunity to not only further existing relationships but also foster new ones. I have at least four new vendors with whom we are currently in discussions to help improve our processes.

I want to thank RMS for continuing to put on a BEST IN CLASS conference, and I look forward to next year in the great state of Texas!!! A whole new venue with new opportunities!!

Todd Gurstel, Gurstel Chargo – Attorneys at Law,

The staff at The National List would like to thank both of these busy attorneys for making the time to share their DCS conference* feedback with us and our blog followers. As a debt collection industry information provider, we believe that personal comments on the value of specific conferences and topics presented can help our members and clients to make more informed decisions about which conferences will be most helpful for them to attend in the future. 

*You will find more details and an agenda for the DCS Conference here.


Categories: Conferences, Debt Collection, Guest Blogs, NL Insider

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