Attending conferences is a great way to reenergize your interest in your job. Mingling with others in the same industry, hearing breaking news first, discussing industry trends, and seeing how different business strategies have played out almost guarantees you’ll come back with a fresh outlook.
How can you make the most of the experience to justify the time away from the office?
- Reach out to people you’d like to connect with beforehand to set up face-to-face meetings/lunches/etc. at the conference. Being able to see people “live” is a big plus, so don’t leave this aspect of your schedule to chance.
- Decide what three topics/questions/ideas you want to focus on at the conference so that you have a thoughtful strategy when it comes time to picking your break-out sessions. This has the added benefit of helping you organize your thoughts so it’s easier to share what you’ve learned once you’re back in the office.
- Bring the experience back to the team members who couldn’t attend. Take pictures, keep notes, bring back giveaways or small trinkets, and share them over a team lunch.
Serendipitous things happen at events so while I’d encourage you to have a loose idea of what you’re looking to accomplish, be open to impromptu gatherings so that you expand your thinking and network. Most of all, remember to have fun!
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