How To Make The Most Of Your Time At #SHRM17

Guest Contributorby Evelyn Watts | Posted | Industry Buzz

How To Make The Most Of Your Time At #SHRM17

It’s that time of year again. The SHRM Annual Conference takes place June 18-23 and this time it’s touching down in the The Big Easy. New Orleans, here we come!

We’ll be there showing off our latest and greatest solutions for driving employee performance, learning and engagement. And we’ll be giving away some custom t-shirts at our booth too. We invite you to stop by booth 1521 to say hello, pick up your custom t-shirt, and explore our latest solutions that help you put coaching, feedback and continuous learning at your people’s fingertips.

Beyond an invitation to stop by our booth and say hello to the team, we want to help you make the most of your conference experience.

Let’s dive in. Here are three simple and effective tips to help you get more out of your time at the SHRM Annual Conference.

1. Plan your #SHRM17 sessions strategically

It’s important to go into this conference with a game plan. There’s so much content on the agenda that no one could ever consume it all, so look at the way your organization’s strategies are changing, and how your people are changing. What information and insights do you need to help people be their best as they work to meet your organization’s goals?

Take a step back and consider what topics would be most beneficial to your organization specifically, not necessarily just what you’re interested in knowing more about. After all, it’s important that the knowledge you gain be actionable.

Also think about how you’ll share what you’ve learned with your colleagues after the conference. Take notes, snap photos of session presentations, and jot down the names of colleagues who would most benefit from what you’ve learned.

1.5 On a related note…plan out your visit to the Expo Hall

Make a point to schedule time for the expo hall around your list of must-attend conference sessions. Because the hall can feel a like a maze, make a list of your must-see vendors and map their booth locations in advance. (Make use of the conference app; it provides a list of exhibitors as well as maps.)

2. Get to know your HR peers

The SHRM Annual Conference is one of the best places to find some of the world’s greatest HR minds all in one place, so get to know one another. If there’s anything I’ve learned from my time spent at conferences, it’s that the sessions and workshops are just one way to gain knowledge while you’re there.

Talk to your peers and get to know what’s working well for them. And share your own successes while you take time to forge some lasting relationships. You never know when you’ll be faced with a problem that person you met just happens to have experience with.

And remember that relationships are two-way – make yourself available to the people you meet as well. Ask about their goals for attending SHRM, the challenges they’re facing, and what key takeaways they’ll be bringing back to the office. (These questions are great icebreakers!)

3. Most important, have fun!

Given that #SHRM17 is in New Orleans, this tip probably won’t be difficult to execute. Having fun – while learning and connecting with your peers – is often what makes this conference so memorable.

On the SHRM Blog, Sharlyn Lauby offers some other great tips for making the most of your conference experience (I really like tips 1, 5 and 7).

See you all at #SHRM17, and make sure to stop by and see us at booth 1521!

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