James DeMeo returns to the podcast for his second stint (Ep. 505), this time discussing the security surrounding the Rio Olympic games, and some of the ways in which communication become critical in a massive environment. DeMeo talks about his belief of terrorism being a real threat, not just of the international flavor, but also of the local, small-time kind, as he covers some of the national issues facing United States venue management teams. DeMeo presents his consulting options for how to ensure that an NFL game doesn't become a police state, but in turn, makes every part of the venue team feel that they are equally trained and strategically empowered to handle situations that may occur. Twitter: @JDeMeo007
Stadium security is a subject that no one wants to talk about, but it affects the fan experience in every facet. James DeMeo has helped open several high profile sports facilities, including The Barclay Center in Brooklyn and Cedar Park Center in Texas. The goal is always the same: enhance the fan experience by protecting them from unnecessary risks. DeMeo discusses his philosophy on engaging staff early, and that doesn't mean simple five minute huddles prior to game time. DeMeo is adamant about a focused plan which ensures that every team member is competent of the procedures of operation, including emergency. DeMeo's aim is to ensure that every ticket sold, every market plan implement, carries with it the overlapping view that safety can affect revenue when it isn't taken into account and disaster happens. Twitter: JDeMeo007
Jarrod Simmons oversees stadium operations for the Jacksonville Suns baseball team. While the fans may be having fun, Simmons is responsible for the safety and enjoyment of each patron, amid beer, on-field promotions and natural events. Simmons talks about his role with the team, how his ticket sales to fans and professionalism with minor league players and coaches matter, and the small things that most people don’t consider about his job which play a major part in what he does during every event during the season. Twitter: @J_Simmons882
Please note that there is a video version of this conversation available on www.sportstao.com for free.
The complex world of league stadium security is discussed with Evan Dabby, who oversees the operations of the MLS through its league office. Dabby examines some of the best practices that are used to ensure safety and maintain order, as well as how the MLS has succeeded in facilitating its team’s local supporter clubs in order to ensure that its messaging about fan safety are received. Dabby talks about some of the de-escalation practices that the MLS has built into each team’s staff security in order to ensure a pleasant fan experience for each patron. Twitter: @EvanDabbyMLS