For those of us who are lucky enough to be working, it’s often difficult to get our organizations to support our participation in professional conferences. Budgets are tight, and there’s much information available online and through free or low cost webinars. My current organization isn’t able to sponsor my participation in this year’s Nonprofit Technology Conference, but I’ve arranged to go anyway. Here’s why:
- While there are many ways to keep in touch through social media, there’s no substitute for meeting people face to face. Events like the NTC are often the only times I have the opportunity to reconnect with colleagues from other parts of the USA (and beyond)
- The conference sessions are always interesting, but sometimes the greatest insights come from conversations I have at meals or other informal activities.
- Spending time with a few thousand of my nonprofit colleagues reminds me that we are all facing similar challenges at our organizations, and can be more effective if we learn from each other
- Those who attend the NTC come from a wide range of nonprofits of different sizes and missions, yet Nten always manages to provide something for everyone through a wide variety of offerings in technology, communications and fundraising topics
- You may make a connection who will turn out to be your next boss (or someone who becomes a valuable addition to your staff)
If you’re fortunate to be able to attend this year’s conference, help someone who can’t by donating to the Nten Scholarship Fund. And if you make it to San Francisco in April, please find me and say hello.