Attending Events is Critical to Your Business
Here’s How to Get the Most Out of Live Events
Attending live events is crucial if you want greater success in your business.
Thanks to a broad range of low-cost technology solutions there are many ways to conduct business online: You can have meetings, share tools, give demonstrations, provide training and so much more without leaving your office.
But there is no substitute for live, in-person conferences. Here are a few things you’ll want to be sure you are doing to get the most impact out of these very special events.
Arrive to the event early –
It’s a good idea to arrive to the event at least a day early so there’s no risk of missing anything. This way you are not stressed about rushing to the event the morning of. What if your flight is delayed and you miss part of the event? Arriving early also gives you a chance to meet and network with others who are there for the event.
Conversations can be more valuable than the sessions –
Surprisingly, the best value comes from the informal interactions with other attendees in between sessions, in the hallways or around the dinner table.
The lectures, talks and panels might provide some new ideas, but are one-directional, and you can get the slides or books by the speakers later. However, the unique, personal, and insightful conversations you have with other people can only happen at the event.
So be sure to spend time connecting with other attendees. Like going to a party where you don’t know anyone except the host, you must have a plan. Otherwise you might end up standing along in the corner, holding a drink, and hoping someone else will talk to you.
Make it a point to meet and talk to those sitting around you. Ask if they have plans for lunch or dinner and invite them to join you.
After hours socializing –
Most conferences have scheduled social events or dinners one of the nights of the conference. These are nice, but they are usually in crowded, noisy environments where it’s hard to meet new people. Often, people spend most of their time with people they already know or the people they came to the conference with. If you’re alone, this can be little awkward.
If you can manage it, try to have met enough people in the previous day’s sessions so that you can wander around at the social and say hi to the people you’ve met. If you’ve already made some decent connections, you’ll be able to jump in on some conversations and meet more people. If you have a few drinks, and can get into the right mindset, it can be fun to bounce around between different groups.
Here’s a great tip: Tell everyone you meet that day to meet at 6pm at the hotel lobby, and have them tell others the same. Then whoever shows up goes to a nearby restaurant together, breaking into groups if necessary. If you ask enough people odds are good that you’ll have a nice group, and this is a great way to meet people in a more informal setting.
Have plenty of business cards –
Yes you need business cards. It seems that many people these days believe they don’t need them. But make sure you have a business card that really stands out so that people will remember you.
When you get a card from someone else, be sure to write a note on it so you’ll remember what it was that sets that person apart. This will help you remember all the people you met.
When you get home, be sure to enter all your new contacts into a contact management system so you can keep track of everyone you meet and follow-up immediately after the event.
Sit up front –
Sitting as close to the front is always recommended so you are not distracted and can concentrate. Many times you will notice that top income earners and leaders sit up front. There is a reason for this! You never know when that one golden nugget will be shared at your event and by sitting up front you will have the best chance to catch it!
Have fun –
Have fun at your event. Loosen up a bit and remember to smile. Most people are attracted to others that are happy, confident and genuine. If there are outside activities going on, participate in them and enjoy yourself.
The bottom line about events…
Events drive growth in your business. I always recommend that everyone attend at least 3 events a year. Try it and you will see how fast your business will grow!
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By Lynn Huber
p.s. Here’s another Million Dollar Tip –
Of course you’re going to take notes – I don’t have to tell you that one, right? But here’s another valuable suggestion. On the last page of your notebook, write at the top, “Action Items”. Then every time you learn something at the event that you know you want to implement right away, right it on that page.
Once you get home, you won’t have to go all the way through your notes to figure out what you wanted to do when you got home. It will all be on that page.
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