Since there are so many administrative conferences being offered, I would like to walk you through a series of blogs on how to select the conference that is right for you, gain approval and how to get the most for your investment.
I am keeping these blogs to the point.
A conference should feed your brain and soul!
- Start with the end in mind. What is your goal or goals for going to a conference?
- Education-wise? What skills do you need to grow? What new skills do you need to learn/develop? The problem with this is sometimes we don’t know what we need to develop. It’s called our blind spot.
- To network and meet new people?
- Learn best practices from peers?
- Learn best practices from subject matter experts?
- What is the value of the program? In other words, what are you getting for your money? Any extra events such as a welcome dinner?
- Inquire about the quality of the workshop materials? Will you be able to use them as a reference guide after the training? Do they provide robust information?
- Do your research. Make a comparison spreadsheet, if necessary
- Topics to be covered – do they align with your goals?
- The flow of the agenda – is there time for networking? Hallway conversations?
- # of attendees (you may not always see this number listed on the conference website)
- The pros and cons of large vs. intimate conferences.
- WHO is hosting the conference? Are they on a mission to help assistants?
- Identify your learning style (and why that’s important)
- High energy or slower pace?
- Hands-on; experiential or sit and listen
- Talked to or involved and be able to do activities with other attendees when a speaker is presenting
- What kinds of people do you relate to or want to be around? (This is very important. Who attends is just as important as the speakers.)
- Low-key vs. high energy
- Who are a step or 2 ahead of you or just like you
- Passionate about the profession or it’s just a job
- Committed to making a personal change or someone who just wants to be out of the office and learn some basic stuff
- Do you want to be surrounded by people who will make you better? Or agree with you all the time?
- Do you want to be around sharp, professional speakers and attendees or ho-hum people?
Be sure to look for the rest of this 6-part series.