In your working life, your are going to find yourself attending several conferences a year. These could be directly related to your industry or they could just be team building excursion conferences to boost team morale.You may or may not want to attend any of them. The majority of conferences targeted towards your particular position or line of business are an excellent source of networking contacts you can use. Whether for sales opportunities, possible clients, or potential employees. However, it is easy to waste time during these events that you could be using for better opportunities. If you want to make sure you get the most out of these conferences you are attending, just be sure to avoid these conference time wasters.
Conferences usually involve several meetings back to back. This means they are usually planned down to the very last minute, so you can’t expect to get the most out of a conference if you continually arrive late. It’s conceivable that you may end up missing the most important part of a speech by showing up after the event has already started. There are some movies that make absolutely no sense if you miss the first few minutes, this could be applied to missing the first part of a presentation.
2. Interacting with Colleagues
While you may be more comfortable hanging around the people you work with on a regular basis, it isn’t conducive to developing new business contacts. Step outside of your comfort zone and introduce yourself to new people. They may end up providing you with an exciting opportunity in the future.
3. Attending Everything
As mentioned before, these conferences are jam-packed with meetings and presentations on a wide variety of subjects. Some may be completely irrelevant to your line of work. Don’t waste precious time sitting in on a presentation that has nothing to do with what you do. Pick and choose the sessions you want to attend by selecting those that are beneficial to you and your work industry.
4. Leaving for Lunch
You have probably paid good money to be at a particular conference. Chances are that breakfast and lunch are also included. Although the day may seem long, staying at a conference for lunch is a perfect time to talk to new people and develop new business relationships.
5. Not Taking Notes
You may pride yourself on having a semi-photographic memory, but you may find yourself disappointed when trying to recall something interesting or important you heard during a presentation. You are going to be bouncing from one presentation to another and trying to soak in as much information as possible, no one will fault you for writing things down.
6. Hiding in the Back
While you may think you are being inconspicuous by sitting in the back during all of the presentations, you are actually bringing negative attention to yourself. Important people in your industry attend these conferences and by sitting in the back you are giving off the impression that you just don’t care. Sitting in the front will not only allow you to hear everything being said, you will also appear attentive. If you aren’t putting in the effort or giving the attention these conferences require, you are wasting your time by attending.
While they may not be the most exciting part of your job, they can definitely be beneficial to your career advancement. Don’t underestimate the importance of meeting new people and listening in on a presentation that could further your position with your company. These conferences are put together by peers in your industry for the sole purpose of giving people the opportunities they need to move up in the corporate world. Don’t miss out on your chance by wasting their time, as well as yours.
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