You’re headed to a big work conference and expected to make a good impression. These corporate things can go off without a bang, however, so you want to make the best use of time. Here’s effective conference conquering strategies your boss will be proud you read.
Cherry Pick the Presentations
Depending on the size of the conference, there may be one or several presentations going on. Look over the list of presenters beforehand and choose the ones that will be most beneficial to you. If there is just one presenter at a time, you may want to excuse yourself from those that don’t seem interesting or do not pertain to your line of work.
Ask Questions When You Get a Chance
You may find a presentation to be helpful yet it’s not totally aligned with your job or company. You can make the presenter customize the information by asking them a question. You may jot down a few questions before the conference or find that you have a burning question due to points raised during a presentation. You’ll have a chance at the end to ask questions, so make your question a good one.
Practice an Elevator Pitch
You’re going to be exposed to a lot of professionals. Practice introducing yourself in a few sentences or less. You don’t want to use a lot of time yet you want to ensure that you make an impression. Rather than your actual job title, use language that describes how you benefit your company and its clients. There’s not much one can get out of a ‘marketing manager,’ yet if you state you optimize the company’s website to get more organic traffic it will be more tangible.
Bring Business Cards
Just about every attendee is going to be giving-out business cards. That means you need to have them too, yet be creative by having a card that is shaped differently. Moreover, some make an impression by bringing promotional items. Brand pens, smartphone wipes, and other gifts with your company logo and give them to cohorts at the tradeshow.
Some are not social by nature, opting to keep to themselves or only speak when approached. However, conferences are not times to be shy. Make it a point to approach others and get out of your shell. If you have trouble speaking to others then just ask them questions about their business, job description, etc. Also, if there are events planned after hours, don’t be the one sitting in your Marriott New Jersey hotel room; get out and socialize!
Don’t Get Drunk
There’s nothing wrong with having an adult beverage when you’re around cohorts, yet you don’t want to drink too much alcohol. Alcohol influences the brain and your motor skills, so a person who seems sharp and insightful may appear as a dullard after a few cocktails. You want to ensure you’re making the right impression. No one comes back from and states the conference was successful because they got too drunk.
You might have diet restrictions that make it hard to find things to eat at the conference. Also, you may have a lot of things to do and forget to schedule time for lunch, etc. Bring snacks so you don’t feel tired and drained from all of the encounters and information. Otherwise, you could start feeling hungry and anxious, which will take away from your ability to make the most of the conference.