Master the art of attending a conference

If you go to every single session, you’ll miss the most important stuff. Trust me.

Attending conferences is my favorite part of my job.

It gives me a chance to meet communicators, learn about the issues you want to read about, and recruit webinar speakers.

After going to hospital and health care conferences for almost two years, though, I’ve realized it’s more than just sitting in a room and listening to a speaker. There’s a lot going on outside the session rooms.

Here’s how you can take advantage of what’s available:

Don’t go to all the sessions

Before your CEO (or my CEO) freaks out about this piece of advice, hear me out:

It’s more healthful to give your brain a break than to cram it full by attending every session.

Have you ever had a full day of attending a conference, collapsing on your hotel bed, and feeling that your brain was going to burst? So many PowerPoints, so much data, so much information—how is possible to absorb all that? Well, you can’t.

Sometimes, you just need a break to think about what you’ve heard. The best thing to do is treat yourself to a mid-afternoon hiatus and explore the city you’re in. You’ll come back for the second part of the day more refreshed, eager for more, and ready to attend the networking event that evening.

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