Getting the most out of a conference
Conferences offer great opportunities to develop your professional skills and advance your career. As well as learning and hearing from inspirational speakers, conferences offer the perfect opportunity to network and meet others in a similar field. It can be a little overwhelming to take everything in, so here are some handy tips on how to get the most out of a conference:
Conferences are a great chance to meet new people but also to reconnect with those you’ve met before. If you know other attendees, or want to improve your relationship with any clients for example, arrange a time to meet up at the event for a coffee and catch-up a few weeks before the conference.
- Choose sessions that apply to you
Often conferences will have multiple events running at the same time and way more than you’ll be able to attend. When choosing which ones to attend, make sure they are interesting and relevant to your career, cover a variety of topics and include opportunities to build on existing skills. Try to attend a couple that might provide you with an opportunity to socialise with people you’ve not met before, but also include some important down-time for relaxation and to allow yourself a chance to digest everything.
- Take Notes
You’ll be bombarded by a wealth of information, so be sure to take notes in a way that you’ll be able to easily understand and access once back in the office. Remember at the end of each session to note down at least 3 important things to take away from the session and anything you wish to follow up on once you’re back at work. This will help you to remember what you learned during the session and provide you specific tasks in relation to that. For top-quality business accommodation, think about Birmingham Serviced Apartments at http://www.8waterloostreet.co.uk/
- Enjoy the social events
Don’t be afraid to relax and enjoy yourself at any social events out on by the conference organisers. Whilst you don’t want to miss any important sessions, remember that many of the most important connections, relationships and exchanges of information occur when people get together for a bit of fun and networking. A great conversation and a handshake often goes a long way in creating and maintaining business relationships.
- Ditch the technology
Yes, it’s about work so you might feel the need to constantly reply to emails and update your social media feed with fascinating business insights – but put away your phones and laptops for a while. A conference is about interaction, connection and communication, so you wouldn’t want your phone to ruin that opportunity. You don’t have to disconnect completely but putting it away during workshops and whilst chatting during a coffee break allows you to make the most out of connecting with the other attendees around you.