Kati Kleber’s ProTips on navigating a nursing conference
So you’ve decided to see what these nursing conferences are all about, and your first conference is just around the corner. But, as a rookie, you don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb among all the nurses.
Luckily, we have Kati Kleber on deck, ready to dish out the top must-knows and must-haves for making the most of a nursing conference. Think of this as your everyday checklist:
1. Check out the schedule beforehand so you have a game plan.
Make sure you read the descriptions carefully! Don’t just go by the title. And try to see a variety of different sessions. When choosing, ask yourself, “How will this information help me to help my patients?” Because not all sessions are always applicable to you and your role, you want to use your time wisely.
2. Thoroughly search the event via social media.
Follow the conference on all the right social media channels—know the hashtag for the event as well as the key players. Make time to do your research so that you’re not scrambling to keep up with a variety of feeds during the actual conference.
3. Pace yourself and come prepared.
Just think of the conference as a very temperate, very level hike. Comfortable shoes, a water bottle, and quick snacks are a must. Conferences can provide for some very long days.
4. Figure out ahead of time the best way to get from your hotel to the conference – and the nearby coffee shops!
Be that person who has time to stop for coffee…and a strong geographic sense of “where.” Don’t be afraid to consult your phone—or a good, old fashioned map!
5. Only carry what you need.
Err on the side of “less stuff to drag around.” With all the freebies and handouts, your bag gets heavy quickly, which can strain your neck and shoulder.
Do you have any tips of your own to share? Make sure to leave them in the comments section below!
Kati Kleber BSN, RN CCRN is a a nationally certified critical care nurse located in Charlotte, NC. She is the Nurse Advisor and Editorial Director of the #ProtectNurses initiative, and will be guiding the content we curate, create, and share back with you. Kleber, aka Nurse Eyeroll, is a popular blogger, the voice behind the wildly successful #ProTips series, and a frequent speaker on nursing leadership. You can buy her book "Becoming Nursey" at nurseeyeroll.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other sites. She also has two more books in the works, which will be published by the American Nurses Association and on shelves Feb. 2016!
By Kati Kleber BSN, RN