It’s not that often that one has the opportunity to see something like a conference develop over a period of years. But working for a media company like Highline Media–which likes conferences and sees a real future in them–has given me the chance to do just that.

I was reminded of this once again when I received the newest brochure for the 3rd Annual Life Insurance Sales Mastery Forum, which is being held in Atlanta from Sept. 27-29.

I’ve attended the previous two and have written about them. When I think about the progression from the first SMF (as we call it around here) to the second I think in images that represent a huge leap forward–kind of like when your child goes from crawling to standing up and walking on his or her own two feet.

It’s not that the first SMF was bad–it wasn’t–but let’s just say the growing pains were somewhat apparent. By year two, however, those growing pains had evaporated and the forum was in full flight.

This year’s SMF promises to achieve a similarly large leap over last year’s.

As before, each day of the 3-day conference has main platform sessions that feature industry experts on subjects nearest and dearest to their hearts and minds.

The Sales Mastery Forum has always been about becoming (more) successful, but this year’s platform sessions underline that message even more. So, you’ll have Harry Hoopis, co-sponsor of the forum, talking about “What It Takes to Succeed” and sharing his own personal formula for success. And I can tell you that if you’ve ever been to the headquarters of the Hoopis Performance Network, it’s obvious that Harry knows about success inside and out.

Dave Sherman, who is intriguingly known as a “professional ice breaker,” will present “Success at the Starting Line: How to Sell More by Actually Selling Less.”

Then there’s also a session with the irresistible title, “Becoming Unforgettable: Developing Your Brand,” presented by Robert Krumroy.

And not least, one platform session will offer the opportunity to learn from a true legend in the business, Al Granum, creator of the One Card System, which has propelled thousands and thousands of agents into the front-tier of life insurance producers.

Apart from the platform sessions, the forum offers a combination of 2-hour workshops and 1-hour fast track sessions that not only present strategies for success in many different areas of a producer’s daily business but also go into detail about implementing them.

There’s a lot more, of course, but as they say on TV, time is limited. In any case, if you haven’t been to a previous Sales Mastery Forum and this year’s sounds interesting, you can check it out further at .

Speaking of conferences, you might have missed the news that Highline Media bought The Conference Group Ltd. recently. This group has for years put on the Annual Executive Conference for the Life Insurance Industry, and this year’s will be the 17th in the series on Dec. 14 and 15 in New York.

This is a stellar affair for execs at the CEO and CFO level. Part of the reason is that many of the speakers are themselves at the CEO level and so the meeting becomes a real sharing-of-the-mind environment. It’s like the CEOs are talking about their experiences in the trenches–only in this case the trenches happen to be the corner office.