Training conferences are often the highlights of our year. Filled with excitement and anticipation, we register early, pick our workshops, and anxiously await the keynotes of famous speakers. When the conference begins, we dive into the full experience. Sometimes we have so much fun that we might forget the reason we’re there. While we focus on the details, dinners and dates with friends, we overlook the overarching strategy for attending and what challenges we are trying to solve.
To address these strategic issues, set organizational, personal, and spiritual objectives for each conference. These objectives define exactly what you will do or create based on your attendance at the event.
To establish the organizational objectives, ask:
What do I need to do or create in my organization that will help us fulfill our mission? These objectives should be inspirational and important. If they’re not, they won’t be fulfilled. An organizational objective might be to develop a volunteer assessment process.
For the personal objectives, ask:
What will enhance my life, ministry and skills for new and innovative thinking? These objectives should expand your current modes of thinking and stretch your abilities. Learning tools for ministry innovation might be a personal objective.
To form the spiritual objectives, consider:
How might I enhance my walk with God? What changes might I make to my spiritual practices? Focus on areas in your spiritual life need renewal or deepening. For example, discovering a new way to practice the sabbath might be spiritual objective.
Setting these objectives before each conference will help you maximize your conference experience and learning. Quickly read your objectives before every keynote or workshop. Refer to them as you take notes in these sessions. Using the objectives as organizational guides will give you a clear action plan when you leave.