Getting the Most out of Exhibits
Exhibit areas can be scary and intimidating if you haven’t attended very many. Here are a few tips to make the most out of the exhibits at the INFORMS Analytics 2019 conference.
BEFORE you go review the list of exhibitors in the program. (Page 33). Circle the ones you might want to visit or that seem interesting. If you are not sure about what some of the companies/organizations offer then go into this with an open mind and plan to stop at booths that catch your eye. Exhibits can be a great way to learn and explore new things. You’ll likely learn something new about software offerings, new courses, new programs, or new companies that you didn’t already know about.
AS YOU GO THROUGH the exhibit area allow time to visit with exhibitors. Introduce yourself-where you go to school or where you work. Maybe inquire about what their company/organization does or where they are located. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. There are no silly questions. A good exhibitor will take time to visit with you. For companies/organizations that you might want to engage with in the future be sure to pick up a flyer or business card if they have one.
AFTER the exhibit booth be sure to follow up with any companies or organizations you enjoyed visiting with. A quick email that just says “I enjoyed meeting you” can go a long way. Networking is an important part of the business world. If you are in academia, it’s a small world and even more important.