Just got home from the IATEFL BESIG conference in Stuttgart. Over the next few weeks I’ll be adding the ideas, links and information from all the speakers so you can access the info too. As a start, here are the main things I learnt from the conference:
1. It is an amazing networking experience and even if you have no proper business cards, grab your printer and just make some.
2. Always add a funny picture / cartoon to your presentation slides to show you are funny – even better a video, e.g. Gavin Dudeney’s use of the literal “Penny Lane”.
3. There are lots of freebies, so always go to the stands and ask for them. My personal tip: ask for posters for your classroom from OUP.
4. Dress up – look a little smart if you can, even if you are not presenting.
5. Talk to everyone as you never know who you are sitting next to – don’t stay in your own little group of friends and teachers.
6. Have your elevator pich in your head before you go, especially if you are a freelancer. Prepare to say who you are, where you work and what you do. As an extra, think of all the benefits you offer a client (not only the features – as demonstrated by Rita Baker – more about her session later).
7. Don’t eat all the cake and biscuits! Or all the cupcakes!
8. If you have a difficult audience member – don’t encourage them to keep going. Cut them down quickly to save us all.
9. Try not to be a groupie if you can help it – I couldn’t (which does not bode well for Scott Thornbury this Saturday).
10. Get a smartphone and get online. I hate myself for saying this but you really miss out if you don’t have a smartphone, aren’t LinkedIn, despise Facebook, think no one is going to give a shit about your blog (opps).
More to come…