I am writing this post at 12:30 am on a flight back to Toronto from London. The three-day Association of Change Management Professionals Europe conference was excellent. Although it is late, I am still on a post-conference high.
My role was to participate on a ‘Best Change Management Books’ panel and to lead a session called ‘Helping Leaders Lead Change’.
My session went well. There were six other interesting sessions running in parallel so I wasn’t sure if anyone would show up. They did and the room was full.
Presenting to your community is a heightened experience. Given the expert knowledge and experience in the room, you are fortunate if it turns into an engaging dialogue. I didn’t anticipate how much dialogue we had and had prepared too much information. The participants will have the extra slides, which hopefully is a bonus to them.
I have not been a role model for investing time to learn. For most of my career, I was always ‘too busy’ to go to courses or conferences ̶ knowledge only came through experience and reading.
Conferences are essential for personal and business development. Here are my top ten reasons for attending conferences in your field:
- Learn of advancements in your field ̶ e.g., neuroscience is still hot
- Test and expand your perspectives
- Understand what other businesses offer
- Reconnect with friends
- Grow your network
- Reenergize you excitement for your profession
- Take time to reflect, when learning takes hold
- Learn of other conferences that would be good to attend (e.g., Berlin Change Days 2013)
- Realize how much you don’t know
- Miss and appreciate your family
My next change management conference is in March. I know I will leave it wiser than I am now.