As a SHRM blogger, I had the opportunity to attend the 2017 SHRM conference that took place in New Orleans. It was my first time attending the conference and was by far the most amazing conference I had ever been to. As many of you are attending the upcoming 2018 SHRM Annual Conference & Exposition for the first time, I decided to share a few tips for first time attendees.
- Wear Comfortable Shoes:
You will be walking a lot; therefore, wearing comfortable shoes is necessary.
- Network; Network & Network:
This conference is all about meeting other HR professionals, hearing their stories and learning from them. Networking with other HR professionals can help you determine where the market is going and what the best practices are. You can also share any business problem that you are facing and seek advice from other HR folks. Networking can also help you find a great mentor that is willing to guide you throughout your career and is interested in seeing you grow.
- Take Notes:
I like to keep a small notebook and a pen with me all the time so I can write down notes, important room numbers and other details. If you are planning to take the shuttle, I recommend writing down your shuttle route, time, and the gate number.
- Carry Business Cards:
As you will be meeting with thousands of HR professionals, carrying your business card can be very handy and useful. You might actually end up talking to the HR personnel of your dream company, so make sure you have your contact card with you.
- Print your Resume:
If you are currently in the job market or even passively looking, I recommend you print at least 10 copies of your resume. Try to network with other employers/ HR professionals and see if they have any current or upcoming job openings. If you are having any trouble with your resume, you can share it with other HR folks and get their feedback on how to make it better or if they suggest making any changes. If you need help, stop by our blogger’s lounge and our amazing team will help you as well!
- Do not try to attend everything:
No matter how much you want to, you will not be able to attend every single training session. The key is to select three to four key sessions that you like the most and then sticking to that plan. If you try to grasp everything, chances are that you will end up getting extremely overwhelmed.
I look forward to seeing you all soon. Deep-dish pizza - here we come!
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