Reflections from Jen
Last week, I reflected on how time really does fly, and I’m reminded of that again this week when I realized that it’s nearly upon us: we now have just 66 days until our Environmental Leader & Energy Manager Conference (ELEMCON), May 15-17, at the Denver Marriott Tech Center (I know the exact number of days because we have a countdown on the conference website). In this instance, I’m happy that the days are slipping by so quickly, because conference time is one of my favorite times of year. Have you joined us yet? If not, I just want to give you a handful of reasons that I come alive during and after the event, and why you might, too:
–They get me: during the three days of ELEMCON, I meet people who understand the challenges the industry faces, who are passionate about change, and who have big ideas on how to get there – all the things I constantly mull as I write my articles. The feeling of being with people who get excited (instead of rolling their eyes) when my speech is sprinkled with phrases like zero waste, building information management systems, circular economy or responsible supply chain, is both a relief and an inspiration.
–“Wow! That’s cool!” You know how, when you’re really passionate about a topic, and then you hear someone share a great idea or who puts something in a new way, and suddenly you feel even more passionate, because you’ve learned something new? I tend to be fervent and I can’t always contain it, so when that moment happens, I’m liable to burst out something super enthusiastic (complete with exclamation! points!). At ELEMCON, I experience “wow-that’s-cool” moments many times over.
–I feel smart. And dumb. But it’s okay. At the workshops and sessions, you’ll hear great ideas that you can steal for your own use, and you’ll increase your knowledge base with every new speaker. For me, it feels great to nod along with someone, to understand where they’re going, and to feel the light bulb that goes off when everything comes together and it all makes sense. I’m learning. I’m internalizing new ideas. I feel smart. At the same time, I’m surrounded by so many intelligent people who are doing so many innovative things to move the industry in bright new directions, that I feel, well, a little intimidated. Still, when surrounded by so many brilliant people, I can practically feel my IQ rising. (And wow! That’s cool.)
–Parties and celebrations. Learning, sharing, networking is fabulous – then comes a time when you just want to hang out and talk to people. ELEMCON cocktail parties and awards celebrations give us the chance to kick back, meet people in an informal setting, have some amazing food, and share stories (and maybe a beer or two). The excitement that has built throughout the day reaches full bore in the evening, and you can practically smell inspiration in the air.
See there? Now I’ve gotten myself all wound up and I’ve still got – what was it? – 66 days to wait. If you want to share in the excitement in May, definitely check out the conference website, and let me know if you have any questions. You can also find conference updates on Twitter – just search #ELEMCON18. I can’t wait to see you there!
PS: With 66 days still to go, you’ve got plenty of time to register. But don’t wait too long because space is limited.