So, you had a blast with all your fellow design professionals in Chicago. You’ve rekindled your creative spark, picked up some hard-hitting advice on managing your firm, gathered a bunch of paper goodies and collected a fistful of business cards.
Don’t let all this inspiration go as you settle back into the real world!
Here’s a strategy for keeping the HOW vibe alive, whichever event you attended:
- First, unpack. Remember all the paper samples, photo catalogs and print brochures you picked up in the Resource Center—the stuff you spent an hour in line waiting to ship home? Yeah, that. Unbox everything, and place your conference binder on your desk beside your Mac for more inspiration this week.
- Schedule a show-and-tell. Set a half-hour meeting this week to share all the goodies you collected in the Resource Center with your team. If you chatted with a vendor and got scoop on a new product, be sure to pass that info along to your colleagues. If you’re a freelancer, consider connecting with a few other creative solopreneurs in your area to share your knowledge.
- Relive the experience. If you purchased the registration package that included all the MP3s (from sessions whose presenters gave us permission to audio-record), you’re all set. If you didn’t, then check the conference website afterward to pick up MP3s of sessions you missed or you want to hear again.
- Review your notes. While the information is still fresh, go back through the notes you took in your conference folder. Jot down new thoughts that come to mind, use a highlighter pen to mark key ideas that you want to remember, fill out any worksheets or checklists provided by the speakers. Make notes on handouts for sessions you missed, too. Keep the folder as a resource you can refer back to six months from now.
- Stay connected. Don’t let that stack of business cards you collected in Chicago lie in a pile on your desk. This week, send e-mails to people you met and want to stay in touch with. Encourage a longer-term connection and build your network.
- Let us know what you thought: Keep an eye out for a follow-up e-mail from us with a link to a survey, where you can rate all the sessions you attended, tell us about your experience and recommend session topics for next year’s HOW events.