Experts' Insights

IT Conferences: Waste of Time or Self-Improvement?

At first it sounds a little questionable when someone says that they visit different conferences in order to learn something new and improve themselves as specialists. How is it possible to learn anything in 1 hour lecture? They give us just general information, no deep explanation, describe techniques and tools related to specific projects etc. Moreover, there are so many sources of information nowadays, that you can learn almost everything you need in the most comfortable way, without even leaving the house 🙂

However, there is the other side of the coin. In some respects, attending of professional conferences, in any case, gives you a lot of advantages. Would you get them all? Up to you!

As for me, there are some best things you could gain from attending such events.

New ideas or useful approaches you could implement in your work

It’s obvious that you cannot obtain a lot of experience, knowledge and become much more appreciable on the next day after attending a conference. But, you listen to different people with experience in various projects, you could ‘borrow’ their ideas, techniques, look at your own activity from the other side and realize – maybe something would be more efficient particularly in your work and your current position and responsibilities. They could not give you a perfect formula ‘how to be cool and prosperous’, but they could prompt correct way that would be suitable for you.

Avoiding mistakes by making conclusions on others’ experience

As a rule, lecturers on conferences are specialists with a plenty of experience, who have worked with different projects and technologies for many years. They usually used to various approaches and tools before getting the best techniques for their current work and do a great job on projects they are involved into. It does not mean that it will work for you, but analyzing their trials and mistakes, in particular, could help you to prevent negative attempts in your activity.

Real-time studying (ability to gain answers on all your questions immediately)

If you have any questions, suggestions, doubts… you can figure out everything that disturbs you at once during the lecture, or even after it by speaking directly to the speaker. You receive a quick response, smart discussion, and knowledge sharing as a result.

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Facility of inspiration and motivation

Probably, almost everyone was eager to study and work so hard as possible, especially at the beginning of their career. And it is fairly hard keep yourself in such high spirit all the time. People come accross different things everyday that become like obstacles for reaching their goals: fear to fail, underestimating own capabilities and potential, laziness (yes, let’s face it; perhaps, the main reason why we are not so successful yet as we wish).

While spending time with people who are more qualified, skilled and versed than you, you become much more inspired than after reading stories about “top 20 people succeeded in IT”. They could ‘wake you up’, spark your curiosity. There are real people, who started as you and who received everything they have by working and studying.

Rest and team-building

At any rate, changing environment, new acquaintances, spending so much time with your teammates and collaborators outside the work and in informal atmosphere have a great effect on your relationships on the whole.

New emotions, positive, smart and communicative people around you – it’s a good chance to spend time with benefits and alos have fun.

If you are a lecturer as well...

And the last one, advantage not for everyone but it exists: if you are (or you are going to be) a lecturer (at any internal courses in your company or even on other conferences) – it’s a great opportunity to find new ideas how to supply information to listeners in the most effective and entertaining way, how to catch their attention and arouse interest.

Yes, you can learn all you need on the Internet. Yes, you can read hundreds of posts and publications related to your activity. In the matter of fact, I cannot promise you that you’ll become much more inspired and skillful after visiting one of such events. But all of those things above work for me. And maybe it could work for you… Just give it a trial before judging. 😉