Publish Date: October 18, 2016
Professional and personal power come from stepping outside your comfort zone and actively participating. You, your staff, your patients, and even your family, will all benefit from you attending an industry conference.
We chatted with some perioperative nurses who regularly attend conferences and they came up with these five specific reasons why attending an industry conference is so important.
This one may seem obvious but networking with your perioperative peers in person will actually lead to better care for your patients. Connecting with others who have experienced the same challenges as well as those who have experience in another specialty area like robotics, pediatrics or infection prevention, can help educate you. In addition, expanding your national (and international!) network will greatly benefit you when you are ready to make your next career move. You’ll have important resources to help make it happen.
2. Professional Development
The best trade shows and conferences offer various educational opportunities. Gaining exposure to new products and technology is good for you, your staff, and again, your patients. No matter how experienced you are, you can always learn something new. Also, if you’re ready to up your industry conference game, try presenting a poster (or other educational opportunities) or even sharing your specific expertise by speaking at a conference.
3. Position Yourself as a Perioperative Expert
This could be within your facility or amongst your peers nationally depending on your professional goals. All perioperative nurses are experts in their field. However, being known as an individual who seek out professional education opportunities you will more likely be promoted and sought out as an expert. Attending an industry conference is a solid first step to reaching the goal of becoming a perioperative expert.
4. Knowledge Sharing & Collaboration
In the perioperative profession this means taking networking to the next level. Some of the greatest conversations happen on conference breaks and lunches. Someone brings up an innovative surgical idea they heard in a session or a new product on the exhibit floor, then the conversation starts. When your peers share their experiences and challenges we all benefit.
5. Have Fun
You work in a stressful, high-pressured field. Life can’t be all work and no play. Most conferences have a significant fun element included. Mixing social activities with industry education is a must. Look for conferences that allow you to easily mingle with your peers. If you can, add a day or two to explore the host city, too.
Again, knowing more about your profession benefits not only you, your staff, but your patients. Attending industry conferences also demonstrates that you are committed to your profession as well as to having some fun.