How to Manage It All at the #2019NBAAGC

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How to Manage It All at the #2019NBAAGC

There is going to be a lot of activities at this year’s conference, and you may also have other commitments you need to take care of too.

I will like you to make a plan in advance based on the session titles and recommendations from others. This would give you the security of always having at least one good option for what to do at any given time. At the same time, cultivating an element of spontaneity will help you stay engaged over what can be a bit of a marathon.

So, if I am looking to shake things up, I’ll search the conference hashtag on Twitter and see what pops up, which can lead me to interesting sessions that I would have otherwise missed.

A conference tend to be demanding from a social perspective, and it can be therapeutic to trade the crowded and noisy hallways, friendship centre, the book stands for thirty minutes or an hour of rest and decompression. A lull in the middle of the day can also be a good time to deal with any pressing work or to chip away at some of the emails that have piled up.

Try to go with the flow and not plan too far in advance. If you catch a talk, that’s great, but if you’re talking with people or in other talks instead, that’s fine too.

Search the program app (#2019NBAAGC) for a few keywords and follow the sessions on Twitter, it allows you to keep up with things happening in other rooms when you have scheduling conflicts.

I’ve had family members tag along to such International conferences like the NBA-AGC, but I think it’s hard to get a lot out of a conference with a kid in tow. So usually, if you are attending a conference like this, your spouse stays home to parent (or your house help), and then when your spouse travels for conferences, you’re parenting at home.

Pace yourself. Sometimes go to talks that are not necessarily within your area – you may be surprised.

Many delegates set unrealistic schedules for themselves that don’t include time to unwind and socialize. Also, try not to do too many things at the same time. For example, I usually do not tweet during presentations so that I can focus on what the speaker is saying. When I need to read my emails and catch up with urgent issues, I walk away from conference room and spend a couple of minutes to respond to mails if there is need.

Don’t go to conferences along with friends and family, it may not work well, there can be a drawback, as you can sometimes feel pressure to spend time with them rather than at the conference.

Plan which session(s) you will attend ahead of time. During breaks, try to distill each talk down to a one-or-two-sentence summary and connect it to your work or the greater direction of your field to help digest and retain what you’ve learned.

Be rest assured that out of the 41 sessions of this year’s NBA-AGC, the five(5), six(6) or ten(10) of the breakout-sessions that you will attend, and with several conversations you will experience at this conference, maybe two or three will really make a difference to your future work and thinking. The rest might be interesting, but it’s something you can ultimately learn in journals and downloaded presentations as well.

My suggestion: Skip some talks to be rested for your own session; skip some more talks to have lunch with someone you are really interested in or who you won’t meet in person again for another year.  And try to keep other work commitments down to checking emails.

Bad sessions can be extremely productive at times. So, for this one should still be respectful to the speakers/presenters.

However, if it’s a decent presentation, there are three kinds of people in the audience; the person who wants to be noticed; the young or nervous and looking for support; and persons with interesting questions, – try to always pay attention and not get angered.

The first time I went to a conference, I tried to attend all the sessions I could because that would get me the most benefit — or so I thought. When there were two sessions at the same time, I went back and forth from one to the other. This was a terrible mistake. It was not productive at all, and I finished exhausted and stressed.

My final suggestion: Now, carefully study the #2019NBAAGC program in advance, tailor your own program based on the summary of the sessions, make notes about researchers who are attending, and think about productive questions to ask them.

Please do enjoy yourself as we welcome you to the 2019 Nigerian Bar Association Annual General Conference here in Lagos, Nigeria.

Lest I forget, try and pick up a copy of Newswire Law and Events Magazine at the venue. It won’t tear your pocket – just N1,000 only.

Wait; get a copy for yourself, another for a friend. You would be glad you did.


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