Your colleagues are excited to reconnect over drinks and dinner, but how can you enjoy the sights and sounds of Las Vegas while still get the most value from the conference?
Here are some tips from a Las Vegas local and attendee.
DRINK PLENTY OF WATER
While the temperatures have dropped from the warm, triple digits of summer, there is the that other aspect of Las Vegas that you should take into consideration. Libations!
Assume you’ll be socializing well into the night, so drink one glass of water for every glass of alcohol. Hydrate yourself with water to counteract the effect of dehydration (from the alcohol) and may wake up in the morning without the hangover.
Here are 4 additional tips from WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/balance/features/how-to-hold-your-liquor
HAVE A PHYSICAL COPY OF YOUR SESSIONS
Do not rely on the SAP conference app or notes on your smart phone to get you through the day.
At a previous conference, the agenda that I had spent 2 hours putting together on the SAP iPhone application disappeared half-way through the conference. For some explicable reason, my session had “expired” and all attempts at logging in or restarting the app did no good. My planned session were gone and I had to frantically find the next sessions.
Also, the last thing you’ll want to do at one of SAP’s biggest conference is hugging a wall while you wait for your cell phone to recharge. Better to invest in a battery phone case (technology back-up) or simply print out your sessions (physical back-up).
As a bonus, also schedule an alternative education session in case your presenter is simply reading from his slides.
GET PLENTY OF REST
You’re not in your 20’s anymore and pulling all-nighters are no longer a badge of honor. I’ve seen presenters and attendees over-indulge on the first night and attendance plummet as the conference progresses.
The presentations on Tuesday and Wednesday are generally not as good as the ones on Monday. Most folks also start canceling dinner reservations on Tuesdays and Wednesdays because they were “not feeling well”. Hangovers will do that.
There’s no need to stay out until 4am. Dinners between 6–8 PM with socializing over drinks from 9–11 are acceptable.
If you have a room nearby, then a short nap between 3–5 PM also works wonders.
REMEMBER YOUR GOALS AND HAVE FUN
As an attendee, I find the annual SAP Tech-Ed conferences to be a good “boots-on-the-ground” experience to see not only the technological direction but to also gauge the take-aways from other customers and attendees.
Comparing notes in the hallways and in between presentations are a quick and easy way to reconnect. Also, the real conversations seem to happen after the sessions.
See you at Tech-Ed!