I have been so incredibly fortunate over my 20+ years of working professionally in the private and public sectors to attend many conferences. If someone were to come up to me on the street and say, “Please tell me the top conference you’ve ever attended that immediately comes to mind first.” Without hesitation, I would say three letters “TLG” and here’s why:
- It’s not just a conference it’s an experience. The Alliance for Innovation really taps into the host city to open doors for experiences you’d just never get to do otherwise at a typical conference. VIP type experiences that only major visitors to a city like a dignitary might see.
- Size matters! This is a conference of about 400ish attendees. It’s not massive but not tiny either. As Goldilocks herself would say “It’s just right.” You can really get to know other attendees, come up to a speaker after their session and talk, or visit with vendors and not feel rushed with a line of people waiting behind you.
- Carefully selected case studies. I have the great opportunity of presenting a case study at the 2018 conference for the first time! The process of applying, being interviewed, reviewing our presentation materials a month prior with Alliance staff, is a well-oiled machine. The Alliance knows the importance of quality content and they deliver it.
- Networking… Every conference claims it, but few if any have delivered it to the level of TLG. That “just right” size is factor here, but the Alliance also hosts great events like the Ambassador reception and speed dating, nextEra group meet up and there is always the conference festival that brings everyone together in a fun evening atmosphere. These events facilitate your opportunities to get to know attendees.
- What you bring back – not just for work!! If you’ve hung in with me and read this far, you’re now going to get a huge payoff. Life is too short to not have fun. TLG opens doors to places in these cities where you can bring home all kinds of great ideas for your workplace, but you can also find gems for your personal life as well. For example, at one TLG conference I got my wife some special locally made scented candles. That was four years ago, and she tells me every year how she reorders one from this same supplier because she’s never found ones that hold their scent so well. Last year in Tulsa, OK one presenter mentioned how much they liked a local donut place. Well, I checked it out – incredible. They now have some locations near my city and it’s become a fun treat for us at work but also for my whole family now.
2018’s TLG conference will mark the fifth consecutive one I’ve been so incredibly fortunate to attend. I hope these comments help you see why I keep coming back! I hope to see you in Tacoma!