Attending a conference involves commitment of both time and money. If you were fortunate to attend the world’s largest lean conference, AME Chicago 2019, earlier this month, here are some suggestions on how you to make the most of your conference experience:
1) Connect. Chances are, you collected a significant number of business cards while participating in AME Chicago 2019. You may have also written down names of conference attendees, presenters and keynotes that resonated with you or you connected with other attendees directly through the conference app. Now that the conference is over, it is a good time to gather those names and start engaging with those connections.
This can include connecting on LinkedIn, following the new connections on social media and sending follow up emails. This is a great opportunity to keep conversations going and continuing the discussions you may have had during the conference. Are there questions for which you’re seeking answers? Can you help one of your connections on a problem they encountered? Are there local AME events at which you can continue to build these relationships and enhance your learning? Reach out to one of your new connections and continue the dialogue.
2) Download slides and view keynotes. Some sessions, particularly practitioner-led sessions, have made slides available to AME Chicago 2019 participants. These slides can be found on the session page on the AME Chicago 2019 website or on the AME Chicago event app. On the website, look for the AME logo and with “Download presentation” underneath (like the image to the right). In the event app, look for slides by searching for “documents” in the appropriate session. Once you find, you can either save the presentations to the notes section of your device or email them to yourself and save on a different device or computer.
Note: Some keynote speakers have agreed to share a video of their keynote on the AME Chicago website and on the AME YouTube channel. Others may have made videos of their keynote available for members only. Please check the AME website in the next few weeks to view videos available to both members and non-members.
3) Compile notes. You may have taken copious notes and saved them in different places such as a notebook, an electronic device and even the AME conference app. Now is the time to collect these notes and consolidate them in one convenient location so you can refer to them when you need the information. The act of re-writing can be very effective in helping you remember everything you captured as it was happening.
4) Reflect and create an action plan. Now that you’ve collected your notes in one location, it’s time to reflect on those notes. What were your biggest takeaways? Which topics do you want to learn more about? Who within your network or the AME community can help you dig deeper? What are some tools and actions you could take that would have the most impact on your team? Are there any continuous improvement books to add to your list? What’s next and how can you apply what you’ve learned at your organization?
5) Share with your team. You’ve invested the time, energy and money to attend AME Chicago 2019, now share what you’ve learned with your team and make suggestions for ways to apply this new information at your organization. This is your opportunity to start putting your new knowledge and insights into action.
Do you have a favorite post-conference activity that you’ve implemented? What is the best way to apply what you’ve learned with your team? Share with us here.