Planning to go to a conference this year? Doing some business on the road? Or maybe it’s just a jaunt over to the conference room in your office. Here is a check list of items you’ll need to make your meetings a success.
Conferences help you stay connected to industry trends and standards. It’s a great opportunity to meet people in your industry and those in your outer circle that you can partner with. Panel discussions and key note speakers can bring you the latest and greatest information and trends. You can collect some new ideas and exciting directions to take back to work. Being a road warrior for work can be tough. Here are some things you’ll need to have on hand to make your next conference or meeting a success.
Business Cards-Bring a gigantic stack, more than what you think you need. It’s so annoying when you make a great connection, you are chatting it up and the person doesn’t have a business card. Don’t be that person. If you are spending time making connections at networking events, especially at a conference, pass off your information and be sure to follow up.
Elevator Pitch-One that rolls off your tongue. It’s simple, easy and concise. Have the perfect answer for ‘what do you do?’ and make it interesting. If you are at a conference with professionals in your field, throw out a differentiator. One of my colleagues always says “I’m in real estate and I love working with buyers.”
Notebook-It’s a non-tech item and its old school. Research has shown that you will integrate learning more when you write information down instead of typing it.
Battery Pack-A boosting battery for your laptop or phone is key when you travel. Carry one so you don’t run out of juice and are forced to look for a plug in the conference hallway.
A Plan-Many conferences have keynote speakers or authors rolling out their latest book. There may even be a colleague that you’d like to meet up with that you haven’t seen in years. Create a plan of the things you’ll do at the conference-who you want to meet and what sessions you’ll want to attend. Also create a plan of what you’ll do after the conference. You’ll have a list of take-aways, be sure to implement some of what you learned. If you don’t, you’ve wasted time and energy.
Jetting off to a conference can be fun and exciting. Use this checklist to make sure you are organized and ready to make the most out of your time there.
Margo Crawford is a Productivity Coach and Professional Organizer with Wave Productivity. She works with CPA’s, serial entrepreneurs, small business owners and business professionals to help them get more focused, organized and productive in their workplace. She coaches by phone nationally and in person in Phoenix, Providence and Boston. If you want to get more organized in your office call 602-677-8275 or email [email protected].