Cost or Investment (How to Get More out of Conferences

I’ve seen it many times. Two people sit side by side in the exact same conference but walk away with two very different experiences.

They were both exposed to the same opportunity but only one leveraged that opportunity and walked away with value. 

I have learned that how you decide to show up determines how much you get out

As a trainer I see it regularly in the workshops I run or with those I mentor. If you haven’t decided to show up in a positive way, you will struggle to get the most out of our time together. It’s why I always take a few moments at the start to check in and acknowledge how you arrive so, if we need to, we can hit the reset button and move forward. 

Conferences can be a cost or they can be an investment depending on the value we draw from them.

When I speak to people attending a conference I encourage them to think about how they can show up intentionally and leverage the conference to get the most value out of it. 

Here are three questions I encourage people to ask when they show up at conferences (or team days, training and events).

Conferences can be a cost or they can be an investment depending on the value we draw from them.

When I speak to people attending a conference I encourage them to think about how they can show up intentionally and leverage the conference to get the most value out of it. 

Here are three questions I encourage people to ask when they show up at conferences (or team days, training and events).

1. What do I NEED?

Do you know what you need? Have you showed up ready to get something from your conference experience? Have you thought about what you would like get from being in the room? What people will be in the room that you can meet and learn from? What solutions to your current roadbloacks are in this room?

Focus: Me
Mindset: Student
Ask: What can I get from this experience?
Do: Ask great questions, Speak with different people, Position yourself in electives and sessions that will help you get the answers you need. 

2. What do I HAVE?

Are you investing what you have? Have you showed up ready to contribute to the room? It may be your expertise in a conversation or just your energy to a session. Are you looking for opportunities to connect people together that would add value to one another? What roadblocks are in the room that you can help solve?

Focus: You
Mindset: Servant
Ask: What can I give to this experience?
Do: Look for opportunities to help others. Share your experiences and expertise. Have intentional, value adding conversations. Make intentional introductions. 

3. What can I TAKE?

Have you showed up thinking about how you can take something from this experience for the betterment of those on your team? Are you looking for opportunities to capture your learning and use it to invest and grow your team or organisation? Are you taking value away from this experience that you can apply personally to learn and grow?

Focus: Us
Mindset: Teacher
Ask: What can I use to grow myself and others from this experience?
Do: Take notes, Share learning summaries with peers, Find opportunities to apply content to develop and invest in your team. 

There is always value we can gain when we decide to show up intentionally, regardless of the agenda or speaker. These are just three ways to help leverage your next conference experience.