Have you ever attended a conference before?
I used to always hear about conferences and professional events. I knew that they were a wise move to make. I knew that it made sense to attend these sorts of events. I just never did it. I never went. I made up excuses. The truth was that I was afraid of stepping outside of my comfort zone. We all get held back by the thought of being uncomfortable and stuck in an unfamiliar situation.
Then I finally started to attend events alone. I went on trips, to book signings, networking events, and conferences. I met tons of cool people, learned more than I ever could on my own, and have tremendously enjoyed the experience.
What’s holding you back from attending a conference? Why not experiment by attending one?
I wanted to look at what goes into attending conference.
Preparing for a conference, what do I do?
At this point you have to perform a few simple actions:
- Find an event that you want to attend and enrol.
- Figure out what you goals are. Do you want to meet certain people? Do you want to just learn more about the field?
- Check out the list of attendees and get to know a little about them.
- Bring outfits for different occasions.
- Get ready for an interesting experience.
Now you’re ready to attend the conference.
What are some general tips for when you’re at the conference or event?
- Remember that everyone else is nervous. There’s no shame in being nervous. Every single person there will be a bit hesitant about the whole experience.
- Try to meet everyone. There’s lots of folks that will surprise you. My goal at conferences is to try to meet everyone in attendance. You’ll never know what hidden gems you can pick up.
- Don’t judge. You don’t want to offend anyone by being judgmental. I try not to pass judgment on old friends or new friends. Nobody likes that.
- Learn from everyone in attendance. Every single person has something to offer you and vice versa. You have two ears and one mouth for a reason. This is a learning experience.
By the end of all of this you’re going to be sad to go home. You must say goodbye to all of your new friends. One event is over and the next one i just around the corner.
What happens after the conference?
Now it’s time for you to go home. What do you do?
I’ve been told that you must followup or die. This means that you should try to keep tabs on everyone that you meet. The goal when you get home should be to try to stay in touch with everyone that you’ve met. These can be life long long friends if you just stay in touch.
That’s how you can have a blast at a networking event or conference in the near future. What’s holding you back?