What I Learned at a Tech Conference

November 12, 2011, In: women & business

As I was thinking about how I wanted to restructure this blog, it occurred to me that I have a lot of different facets to my personality and a lot of things I focus on every day. I know I am not alone in this – we women are so good at multi-tasking! With that said, I am hoping to use this blog to bridge my creative and analytical sides of me and hopefully it will speak to some of you as well.

When I only write about making cutesy pillows and decorating my home, I find myself desiring to add more substance to my writing. But when I only think about tech startups, my property management software company and getting more women involved in technology, I’m not fulfilled either. I feel so stuffy, want to loosen up and have a bit more fun. So, I’ve decided that I want to include a little of both in Little Green Bow. I am sure most of it will be about the more creative endeavors because I have so many other outlets for serious stuff. But, I do not want to miss the opportunity to share some of my professional lessons or to encourage girls and women to achieve results in business and technology either.  My hope is that you will find something that inspires you along the way.

Some of this was sparked earlier this week when I attended a conference called Defrag. This conference left me truly pumped up and inspired. It’s a tech conference and according to their website, “[Defrag] has firmly established itself as one of the premiere thought leader discussions about “what’s coming next” in technology”. Defrag has been going for five years although this was my first year attending. I really did not know what to expect and was a bit nervous that the information would be over my head since it is a technology conference, but I was pleasantly surprised. It was a bit like I imagine a TED conference would be like. There were great speakers, intelligent attendees, good breakout sessions, and amazing conversations. There was also a push toward women in technology, which is what solidified my attendance in the first place.

So here are 3 lessons I learned at Defrag this week.

  •  When you put smart people together, you get great results. It was so cool to see people interacting and the different types of conversations that took place. This is a good lesson for life too. We need to fill our lives with smart, kind, caring people if we want to have a life filled with purpose.
  • By limiting the number of people in attendance the event felt intimate and everyone there felt more comfortable. This was important because the conference only lasted 2 days and we only had so much time to get acquainted. The life lesson take away is to make people in your life feel comfortable and important. You will be surprised at how fast people will open up and be their true selves when they feel like they matter.
  • How you talk to women and girls is really important. The women at the conference were invited to a special lunch on the first day where we discussed how to help each other in our careers, but more importantly how to encourage young girls to follow their dreams and pursue math and engineering. We need to reach out to the young girls in our lives and tell them how smart they are. Stop focusing on how cute they are and tying their self-worth to their looks.
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