By Drue Lawlor, FASID
Director of Coaching at Gail Doby Coaching & Consulting
When you make that financial commitment and register for Genius Exchange or other events to advance your business, don’t forget that it is not just a financial investment, but also an investment of your valuable time – and that of your team if they are also attending.
Yet many designers never really plan ahead of time as to how they (and their team members who attend) can be more assured of getting a return on their investment (ROI) – of money and time. From preparing beforehand to making the most of your time while there, here are some suggestions to help you make the most out of Genius Exchange – or your next conference.
Reach out to others. Especially if you are not able to bring team members, reach out to other designers with whom you have developed relationships and see if they are attending. Not only might you want to share a room, but more importantly you can plan ahead to connect when you arrive. Or see if they want to arrive a day or so early or stay after and explore the city with you.
Involve your team. If at all possible, bring team members. They will not only help you share what you learn when you return to the office but they increase the opportunities to network and gain more information IF you agree to separate and mix and mingle at different tables, with different people.
Brainstorm with your team before the event. If you are not able to bring your team, involve them in planning how you can get the most out of the event. Identify what you want to gain from the event. Share the agenda with them and have them share questions you might ask related to the subjects covered on the agenda.
Inspiration/Recharge: Events like Genius Exchange are extremely valuable for gaining inspiration – not only from the outstanding list of presenters, but from the old friends with whom you’ll reconnect and the new friends you’ll make. And of course just being away from the office and exploring a different city offers a chance to recharge you and your business.
Follow up planning and teach. Finally, when the event is over, make sure you have set aside time to organize your notes, connect with those valuable contacts you made at the event and share with your team. If members of your team were not able to attend, plan a time as soon as you get back for a casual get together to share what you learned and get them involved in setting your plans into action. If your team attended with you, have a fun sharing/brainstorming session already on the calendar to move those plans into action items.
Assure your ROI by planning ahead to make the most of “Growing The Heart of Your Business” in the heart of downtown Providence, Rhode Island. Your future is calling!