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CSIA staff group 2015

If you haven’t noticed, most of our AMPED blogs are posted in the form of some sort of “How To” or “Helpful Tips” guide. Can you blame us? While we may not be experts on every single topic, many of us do have a lot of experience and we want to share our knowledge with you! I have my own long list of helpful tips and lessons-learned that I’d like to share, but those lists can wait for now. I’d like to share a different aspect of our work with our clients.

It’s been two weeks since we wrapped up the CSIA Executive Conference in Washington, D.C., an annual event held each year at the end of April. It was a long week filled with early mornings and late nights, leaving us staff members in a bit of a blur. But now that things have settled down, I am able to look back and truly appreciate just how rewarding (and fun!) these events can be. So, instead of sharing thoughts on how to improve your mobile app, complete follow-up efficiently, etc., I’d like to share my favorite things about being onsite instead.

First, I love the face-to-face contact. It’s so fun to see old friends while also getting the chance to meet new people. We spend the majority of our time communicating with members via email or phone so it’s extra special to see them in-person. I’ve found that the members really enjoy this aspect of the meeting as well. We get a lot of “Oh! You’re the one I’ve been emailing all week – nice to meet you!”

Second, I find it exciting to learn more about the various topics that are of interest to our members. As staff, we aren’t necessarily experts on the industry side of things for our clients and so we appreciate the opportunity to be able to learn more through the educational programming. Sure, we are busy running the logistics of the meeting, but every once in a while we get the chance to pop into a session or two. When we have this opportunity, I think we’re able to better understand and appreciate the challenges our members are facing.

Lastly, it’s so fun to see all of our hard work come together. We spend almost a year preparing for these annual meetings and to be honest, it can get exhausting. The hard work really becomes worth it when we get to see it all come together and, more importantly, when we get to see the attendees enjoy the meeting.

We spend a lot of time figuring out how to improve ourselves and our meetings – what can we say, we’re perfectionists! But sometimes it’s important to just enjoy and reflect on all of the good things. Plus, we have to enjoy the results of our work while we can since there is only a small window to do so. It’s only a few days after the meeting before we’re on to planning the next!

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