The joy and opportunities the Internet creates is honestly immeasurable. Now, we can stay in touch with family. We can watch a scholar present from half-way across the world. And we can connect or network with people we have never met. The Internet helps us do all of this better, and faster than we ever have before. But what if I told you there's another way to make connections and grow? An approach that doesn't use a single minute of bandwith, tweeting, or online webinars. Yes, I said it. NO Internet required (except for reading this blog, of course).
Seminars VS Webinars
Webinars are all the rage right now - they're the quick way to learn something new and meet people in your industry from around the world. A webinar aims to promote personal and professional growth on a platform everyone has access to: the Internet. They're convenient - but they just don't exude real connections.
Have you ever been to a seminar or conference? If you have, you know how much you and your business have to gain by attending one. Both seminars and conferences bring together groups of people who have mutual interest in a certain industry or topic - from there, attendees are exposed to keynote speakers, industry leaders, and an opportunity to learn. There are many reasons why you should attend a seminar, in fact, @martydickinson lists 100+ reasons, here. I have taken the liberty to look at his list and narrow it down to what I believe to be the top three reasons why a attending a seminar is in your best interest. Here are the top three reasons:
If you're still not convinced that a seminar would help you advance your professional growth, knowledge and connections ... we have someone you need to meet. Forbes writer, @johnrampton, is an entrepreneur, connector and founder of @Due. He has three more reasons why you should attend a conference, which you can read about here. However, I want to talk about the tips he has for you once you attend a seminar or conference. The first step is to actually go to a conference or seminar - but the next step is to go to it and do it right. If you show up, but don't engage, listen or converse, then you won't see the benefits. Here are some of his tips to keep in mind next time you attend a conference:
All great tips - especially the last one of the bunch. As important as it is to network during the seminar or conference, it's just as important to network afterwards too. Don't be afraid to ask a few people you met to grab lunch to continue your conversations - you never know the connections and business opportunities you might find.
WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT FROM A GREAT SEMINAR?
If you're anything like me, you like to know what you're getting yourself into before you commit. But what exactly are the essentials that you should look for in a seminar? You know, the things that will reassure you that going is worth your time. For starters, see if the seminar or conference has any keynote speakers - and whether or not these speakers are relevant to your interests. You'll gain great insights from them on your industry or passions and have the chance to ask them questions. Secondly, a great seminar will help you grow in more ways than one. It should provide activities or topics that will help you advance professionally, and personally. I'm talking about the two types of you; the you who wants to be empowered to increase happiness, and the you who's concerned about reaching maximum business or career potential. @brandbrick nails the nail on the head with this blog about work-life balance and how our One² event will help put you in charge of you. Last but not least, a great seminar will make you want to come back for more. It might mean coming back to the same seminar next year, or reaching out to the other attendees/speakers for more information. Bottom line: you'll leave craving more knowledge, more growth, and more connections.
I have heard people use words like, “wonderful,” when describing a conference. But, the best word and image I heard at a recent conference was, “magical.” -John Rampton
Give a little. Get a lot.
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