Tech Tools to Increase Your Efficiency at Conferences

Image of a Conference AgendaThere’s nothing like a conference to energize you. To motivate you. To connect you to your profession and the people that work in it. There is, however, a dirty little secret to every conference. The dark side that no one likes to discuss. (And you’ll never see it mentioned in the conference materials.) More on that later.

I’m getting ready to go to a three-day conference put on by Professional Organizers in Canada. I will be basking in the glow of productivity and efficiency. It seems fitting that I should write a series about how you can use technology to be more efficient before, during and after a conference. Don’t you think?

The first part in the series will focus on The Three Top Tech Tips for Preparing for the Conference

Tech Tip #1:  Be Mobile

The conference is just days away and I’m already packed (can you tell I’m excited)! Two essential tech tools that I’ll have with me are my smartphone (iPhone) and my tablet (iPad). It’s a fine line between being connected and being distracted, so my self-discipline will be turned up a notch. I’ll also be using these tools to help me stay productive while at the conference. I’ll blog about that next week.

Tech Tip #2:  Charge It

I don’t want to get caught with a drained battery. I’ll have my power chargers close at hand, just in case. But before I leave, I’ll have my tech tools charged up and ready to go.

Tech Tip #3: Download Conference Materials

This conference has kindly sent all registrants a PDF of the Conference Manual. This contains all the conference details. I don’t want to lug around the paper copy (I’m trying to go paperless), so I’ve downloaded it onto my iPad for handy reference. I’ve put it in Evernote (a great app that I’ll tell you more about later) so I can easily make notes if needed.

So, are you wondering about that dirty little secret I mentioned earlier? It’s called STUFF. It’s everything we collect during the conference. The business cards, programs, notes, agenda, handouts. It’s the unkept promises for dealing with all this STUFF upon our return to our office. Not to worry though. Technology can help you banish this STUFF and stay on top of your game!

Next week I’ll talk about Tech Tips for Staying Productive While at a Conference.

Pssst:   I’ll be tweeting from the conference with lots of juicy tidbits, so make sure you’re tuned in to Twitter.

What are your favorite tips for staying productive while still getting most out of your conferences? Join the conversation and leave your comment below.


  1. Valeri, this is a great article and quite timely for me. I’m heading to a one-day conference on Nov. 14 and will be sure to follow your tips.

    • Thanks Nadine. You’ll be amazed at how much lighter you’ll feel when you’re not loaded down with papers, binders and resource materials. There’s also peace of mind in knowing your office files are just a click away, should you need them. Have fun at your conference and let me know how it goes.

  2. Hi Valeri
    Loved the feedback. Not a tec person, but I am inspired to educate and organize. My next job I am definitely going to use the I-pad. Great for note taking at all my adventures. No more paper for me.
    Loved meeting you at the conference.

Join the Conversation