Enhance Your Professional Development Plan by Attending Annual Conferences

Larry Sloan
Lawrence Sloan
December 3, 2019
Sponsored by: The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)
From a management perspective, the prospect of sending members of your staff to a conference can be a huge turn off. The expenses are typically high compared to your average one-off training course and travel may be required, not to mention the time away from the office.

But when considering the professional development needs of your employees, don’t rule out the benefits of attending.

Here’s why:
  1. Technology and processes are constantly evolving. If you want to keep your staff current, a conference is a fantastic opportunity for them to access the latest information and research affecting their field of work. Not only through your traditional education sessions, but a lot can be learned from hallway or lunch conversations with like-minded peers.
  2. Suppliers with solutions relevant to your business will be there. Sure, you could rely on referrals or online search when a new need arises, but what better way to browse for solutions to your daily work challenges than a stroll through the exhibit hall? Your colleagues can bring back ideas from companies offering relevant products and/or services.
  3. You could be missing out on a brand exposure opportunity. The people who work for you are an extension of your organization, and ultimately your most credible brand ambassadors. The business connections the people who work for you make while networking at a conference are beneficial for your company as a whole. Take it one step further and ask a respected staffer to submit a proposal to speak at an upcoming conference to expand your reach.
  4. We all need to shake things up every once in a while. Faced with the daily grind, it’s important to take a step back and remember that the work you do is significant and has purpose. Getting away from the office, meeting new people, and learning new things that feed into your work-life could be just the thing to refresh and inspire your most valued employees so they can continue to do their best work.
Should you decide to invest in a few conference registrations for key members of your staff, there are plenty to choose from that offer content relevant to environmental health and safety (EHS).

In addition to the robust line-up of conferences and events offered by NAEM in 2020, the American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exposition (AIHce EXP) may be of interest to you as well. The program provides high-quality education and networking for OEHS professionals who want to broaden their knowledge of occupational health (aka industrial hygiene), gain practical skills, and access emerging technologies offered by leading companies.

Registration for AIHce EXP 2020, occurring June 1-3 in Atlanta, GA, will open in early December 2019. Visit the AIHce EXP website to learn more.

About the Author

Larry Sloan
Lawrence Sloan
American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)
Lawrence Sloan, CAE, has been CEO at the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) since October 2016. Prior to this, he served as CEO for seven years at the Society of Chemical Manufactures and Affiliates (SOCMA), representing the interests of the U.S. specialty chemical industry. Larry was promoted to his first CEO role at the Adhesive and Sealant Council in January 2005 and led the group for five years.

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