Friday, March 18, 2011

The People We Meet

I have to say that the one thing that makes life interesting is people.

Are you ever amazed at who you meet?  I was at an ICE (Institute for Credentialing Excellence) Conference a few years ago and I observed a lady during a reception with several hundred people. Although she was alone and seemed somewhat introverted, she worked the room like a pro. She picked out individuals or small groups that contained no more than three or four people and she met them all. And yes, I met her because I was also one of those wallflowers standing there eating my hors d'oeuvres alone. I may be slow, but I did learn something that night. I learned to not only develop contacts, but to develop relationships. And yes, years later, we still share ideas with each other.

Although I'm still not at her level of expertise, I try and develop at least several contacts and one new relationship from each conference or meeting that I attend. By "relationship," I mean someone that has similar educational interests that can be a core member of my PLN (personal learning network).

For instance, last week I attended another SREB Educational Technology Cooperative meeting and I missed seeing a few friends, but I renewed a few acquaintences and met a few new people that I could add to my PLN. I truly enjoy conferences and it's invigorating to be presented with new ideas, but to be honest, the speakers only serve as facilitators of ideas. It's the people you sit next to, during the presentation or at dinner, etc. that take these ideas and begin the discussions. This is truly the benefit of attending any conference and this is what excites me about people. The ability to learn and share is what makes life fun.

There are so many intelligent, make that highly intelligent people in the world and that is why I'm thankful for social media. The people I meet at conferences are no longer just temporary contacts, but I now have the opportunity to create life long professional contacts.

The world is now a much smaller place because of technology and I truly enjoy sharing and receiving so much valuable information from people at any time or from any place in the world.

If you haven't created a PLN, please consider starting one today!

1 comment:

  1. As I read this post I couldn't help remember all the times I've started a conversation with the person in the chair next to me. Conferences are indeed a great place to meet people of like interests. From these brief encounters, professional friendships can grow. It would be a shame to let this face to face, personal social networking pass us by. The ability to tap into a social networking site has made it much easier for people of different interests to meet and develop sharing semi-professional relationships. The learning curve is much steeper in this type of networking but the challenge of understanding each other is perhaps more rewarding.
    I agree: people is what makes life more interesting, no matter how we meet or communicate.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...