Home from the conference, the homework begins

Details have never been my strong suit.  I’m a big-picture thinker, which is a good thing, but I’ve learned the hard way that the only way to make things happen is to pay attention to the details.

At the conference I attended in San Antonio this past week, I met many interesting people who, like me, work in some capacity (faculty or administration) in the field of engineering education.  Building a strong network of connections with them, my peers, will allow all of us to move forward more effectively in our careers. 

Years ago I would have squandered these potential relationships.  Going to conferences is exhausting for me, and when I returned home in the past, all I wanted to do was run a couple loads of laundry and go to sleep. 

I’m far more mindful of details now.  Because I’m older?  Because I’ve spent the last 15 years working with scrupulously detail-oriented engineers?  Who knows. 

But I’ve definitely reformed my Type-B personality habits as far as making sure I tie up loose ends after a conference.  There’s a relatively small window of time during which we’ll all remember each other, so it’s important to follow up with forwarding any promised materials and sending out LinkedIn invitations while that window is still open.

About Katherine Wikoff

I am a college professor at Milwaukee School of Engineering, where I teach literature, film studies, political science, and communication. I also volunteer with a Milwaukee homeless sanctuary, Repairers of the Breach, as chair of the Communications and Fund Development Committee.
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