There are few universal truths in life, but one we might all agree on is that despite our best intentions, we can’t remember EVERYTHING…especially when we are bouncing from session to session and meeting to meeting at a marathon event like the DIA Global Annual Meeting.
In reality, to make the most of your experience at DIA you should try to leverage a few best practices that will ensure you are READY to learn!
1. Are you ready to focus? Prior to leaving for DIA take the time to research and target the sessions and exhibitors you really need. You can’t participate in every discussion or stop by every booth, so take the time to prepare by reviewing the education schedule and the exhibit hall floor plan to highlight those that best align with your goals!
2. Are you ready to take notes? With each session you might find 5-10 critical lessons – WRITE THEM DOWN – but more importantly don’t forget the context. With each note you take be sure to document the session and the speaker(s) and even snap a picture if allowed…these threads will provide context and allow you to reflect, revisit, and retain critical lessons from each session at DIA.
3. Are you ready to ask questions? The easiest path to learning is to ask what’s really on your mind. You made the commitment (and investment in time and money) to attend, so capitalize on it. Speakers are there to teach and facilitate. Exhibitors want to engage. They all want to hear your questions. So when you have questions percolating in your working memory – don’t be shy, ask them!
4. Are you ready to share? Keep in mind others are learning with you! Research published in 2010 suggests that often the most impactful and actionable lessons from a professional meeting occur through the perspectives and experiences shared between attendees. Make an effort to have 2-3 serendipitous conversations a day.
5. Are you ready to take action? Don’t trust your memory…once you are back in the office following DIA, you WILL forget much of what you learned and most of what you wanted to do. So, before you leave San Diego put time in your calendar to revisit your notes, questions, and conversations and define and document your action items…before it’s too late!
If you embrace these best practices, you can maximize your time at DIA to generate the ideas and lessons that ensure you and your organization are Ready to succeed!
And don’t forget to visit the ArcheMedX team in the Innovators Hub (booth #2101) at DIA.