out on other sessions. The speaker likely will be
wandering around afterward with no one crowding around him or her. Take that opportunity to
introduce yourself, congratulate him or her on
the presentation and ask your quick question.
PMI events are also about learning through oth-
Q: I’m attending a few PMI
ers. Networking doesn’t have to be about making
long-term connections or winning business. Here
are pointers on how to get more out of networking
n Think about questions to ask project manage-
ment vendors. Sure, you want to know more
about their product or service, but you will get
so much more out of the conversation if you can
relate what they do to your current challenges
n Ask about their views on the project manage-
ment marketplace today. This will give you some
great insights. Also find out what other events
they exhibit at and which ones are good for
them and why. This will give you other options
for future events to attend.
n Make the most of lunch breaks and excursions to
meet your peers. The best advice I ever received
about networking is be yourself, ask questions
and listen. It’s relatively easy to start conversa-
tions at events because you have project man-
agement and the event in common.
events this year. How can I get
the most out of them?
A: Attending these types of project
management events can be useful
in your career development. It’s not
just an opportunity to learn through presentations
and seminars but also a chance to brush up on your
networking skills, learn about new products and services from project management firms, find out what
peers are working on and reflect.
With a small amount of planning, you can
come away with knowledge that sticks. Here are a
n For larger events like a PMI global congress, plan
what you want to see and listen to. Find out
where all these sessions are so you can arrive
with plenty of time.
n Network while you wait for the presentation to
start. Ask peers in neighboring seats how the
event is going for them.
n Take notes on the presentation regardless of
how well you think you know a subject. Con-
sider using a smartphone or tablet. Imagine
you’re writing an article on the presentation.
With this in mind, your notes will be more
useful for reading later.
n Capture your thoughts throughout the presenta-
tion. Each talk should make you think about
your current work or where you want to be
in the future. I use a light bulb symbol next to
these points so I can easily find them later.
n Don’t join the queue to talk to the speaker
straight after the presentation. You might miss
To advance on your career path, seek out
the right knowledge and connections.
BY LINDSAY SCOTT
Don’t travel down
your career path
alone. Find advice
and direction here.
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