Key to a Long Career: Ongoing Education

conference audienceAs I arrive in San Diego for the 2009 PRSA International Conference (which gets underway today), I look forward to some exciting educational sessions and invigorating networking with old and new friends. I'm realizing that as independent consultants, we must find our own motivation to attend and participate in educational events.

We don’t have bosses telling us we need to go to a conference or seminar to get up to speed on new tactics. If a Solo PR Pro’s skills are lagging or one’s ideas are out of date, it's unlikely anyone will say so — they just won’t hire you. Though conferences are just one source of education (it's also important to read leading blogs, news of your industry, etc.), events can be an especially intensive way to immerse yourself in the latest thinking. Of course, not all conferences are created equal, but those with a high caliber speaker roster are typically worth the time involved (and many events these days are reasonable in cost).

While most of us enjoy our often solitary work environments, it’s important to occasionally come out from behind the keyboard. Tomorrow morning (Monday, November 9), I’ll be a guest on the “NO GURU ZONE” BlogTalkRadio show where we’ll be discussing this very issue – if you’re available, call-in and join in the discussion! Also, be on the lookout for coverage of PRSA hot topics in the coming days here on Solo PR Pro.

What do you think? Do you have a favorite conference or networking event that you never miss? How often do you try to engage in continuing education activities?

Photo credit: Adam Tinworth