Saturday, December 22, 2007

Tips for Building Visibility at Professional Development Meetings

Attending a professional development meeting in the near future? Here are some suggestions for getting the most out of the event.

  • Show up at events early so you can meet the speaker. It’s easier to build rapport before the presentation, when there are less people vying for the speaker’s attention. Follow-up with an email or card thanking the speaker for spending time with you prior to the presentation.
  • Ask a question during the Q&A portion of the presentation. State your name and a brief one-liner about yourself before stating your question. This allows you to introduce yourself to everyone in the room and increase the likelihood that people will seek you out for a conversation later.
  • Thank the organizers before you leave. This is a nice gesture and a good way to build rapport with people who are close to the organization’s membership. Perhaps you’ll uncover an opportunity for you to assist with a future event and gain greater access to membership contacts.

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  • Great ideas. I'd also suggest doing some research on the speaker beforehand so that you have something meaningful to bring up during your initial conversation. Perhaps you have some information the speaker might find useful that you can send later. Also, being able to offer information on yourself to event organizers (you're an expert on manatees, etc.) can be helpful..and then offer to send an information packet. At the least, this may help get you on a panel.
    Happy New Year!
    Anita Bruzzese

    By Blogger Anita, at 11:49 AM  

  • Anita,

    You're right! Knowing something about the speaker gives you instant credibility. Thank goodness for Google, LinkedIn, and other online tools!

    By Blogger Barbara Safani, at 5:56 PM  

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