Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Top 10 Learnings From ASAE Annual 2013

My fabulous co-presenters and me. Amy Lestition, me,
Laurie Kulilosky, and Ozair Esmail.
The music has died down, the exhibitors have gone home, and lonely discarded lanyards are lying in wait for hotel maids to toss out with the wastepaper for a new day.

After every ASAE Annual Conference comes a sense that camp is over and all of us go back to our regularly scheduled programs. For me, I try to go over the things I've learned, the people I need to remember to follow up with when I get back to my office, and to make the most of my experience by processing as much as possible of it before forgetting.

Here are my top 10 learnings from this ASAE Annual:

  1. Participate in a service project. I didn't take part in a service project this year and I felt like I was missing out on some good networking AND doing something good for the city hosting us. I plan to correct that at the next ASAE Annual.
  2. Volunteer with ASAE more. I miss being on an ASAE Council and I plan to volunteer to be on one again when the next call for volunteers goes out.
  3. Make better decisions. To make better decisions, stop and ask, "What would I tell my best friend to do?" Thanks to author and speaker Dan Heath for this one.
  4. Prepare for powerful condensed versions of my presentations. I had to give what I'd planned as a 12 minute portion of my presentation with a panel of speakers in something more like five minutes. I wish that had been the most powerful five minutes of the presentation, but instead it felt rushed. 
  5. Get to rooms early. Many of the presentations were standing room only. 'Nuff said.
  6. Use MOOC for more personal development. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are changing the way we approach education. I've already taken Coursera courses, but I should check out some others for more FREE online education. Thanks to speakers David DeLorenzo and Kylee Coffman for the MOOC discussion in their session.
  7. Improve my "elevator speech" when explaining what I do. I loathe the term "elevator speech" because it sounds so manufactured and salesy. However, it is helpful to be able to quickly articulate what you do in a way that makes it easy for people to grasp how they can do business with you. With something like "social media consulting for Aptify" people need to know if my services are for them or not. How can I best communicate that without being tacky? I need to work on that.
  8. Bring #assnchat badge ribbons. The weekly Association Chat that I host and that has been going on for over four years now has a powerful community behind it. I want to bring attention to that by having ribbons made for it. Simple, fun, easy.
  9. Look up Kat Cole on YouTube. I wasn't in her session, but it got heavy press in the Twittersphere. People were still talking about her session later in the day. I want to see what she's all about.
  10. Thank Cecilia Sepp for mentioning Association Chat in her session. Every time I meet someone from the Association Chat community who thanks me for moderating the chats each week, I know that they really are thanking all the people who participate and share in the online conversation every day using the hashtag #assnchat. I love it when people spread the word about the chat...and Cecilia has been particularly helpful in that way. 
  11. Jump in the fountains. :)
What were your takeaways from ASAE Annual? Which sessions really taught you a lot? What will you do better next time?

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