Summary of “Conference etiquette”

The author of CyberText Newsletter has attended many conferences and decided to write about the issues she found at one in particular in a post. To summarize, the main points were to be on time, be prepared, and be proactive among other things.

In this particular instance, the following happened at a conference:

  • Some people showed up late causing those who were on time to have to wait. That is not fair.
  • People asked questions that were already answered somewhere else which could have been found out beforehand.
  • The venue did not provide enough outlets for the participants’ devices despite the devices being heavily involved.
  • The presenter repeated information that was already available to read elsewhere which wasted time.
  • When asked a question, the presenter did not restate the question.
  • The presenter did not speak loud enough sometimes.
  • The presenter was not punctual or respectful of the audience’s time.
  • There was not enough time allocated to move from room to room or for lunch.

With careful thought and planning earlier, most of these issues, if not all, could have been solved. These are important factors to keep in mind whether you plan on attending a conference or organizing one.

– Jar T


Networking in the Hospitality Industry

In the hospitality industry and nearly every other field, networking is an extremely important tool in advancing one’s career. One of the most effective ways to network is to attend conferences and conventions that pertain to your field where you can see new innovations, learn about best practices, and most importantly, speak with professionals in the industry that can be potential contacts that can be useful in the future.

When looking for conferences to attend, one useful method for finding these events is to look to leading associations and organizations in the field who usually host or at least have a large presence at these events. For example, in the hospitality industry, the National Restuarant Association (NRA) and the Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) are two large associations in this field.

The HFTP hosts many conferences throughout the year and also co-hosts many other events. These conferences are great for anyone wishing to break into the hotel and tourism industry and especially learn about new technologies that help those in that industry.

The NRA hosts a variety of events including summits and other conferences that are more focused on the restaurant industry. These events and this association, in general, is a great networking tool for those wishing to enter the field of restaurant management.

When it comes to networking in any industry, start by finding associations that have a large presence and seek out the conferences and events they host or co-host. The networking gained at these events can go a long way in advancing your career.

-Thomas Skowronski

“Fun in the Bathroom” – Summary

The first blog post I chose to read and summarize comes from a blog called The Technogeek Diaries, authored by Leah Guren. Leah created this post, titled “Fun in the Bathroom,” on November 4, 2010 so it isn’t exactly new or current events, but I found it to be a good (or should I say bad) example of a simple application of technical communication.

In this post, Leah addresses two examples of unusual and unhelpful communication she stumbled across in a ladies’ restroom at a conference center in Wiesbaden, Germany. The first was a hand dryer with instructions that read “place hand in front of sensor” but in reality required the push of a button to operate. This wording is confusing, as many hand driers and other restroom fixtures are being switched over to touchless technology. The instructions lead the user to believe that the drier will turn on automatically rather than requiring a manual button to be pushed. This could simply be a “lost in translation” issue if the original German instructions were worded appropriately, but a company who supplies a large number of these driers to locations where many languages are spoken, the employee or group in charge of creating the labels or instructions should ensure that the final wording is accurate. The second example was of the sanitary product disposal unit which not only read “Lady Killer,” but also had the image of a handgun printed on the bags. Separately, or especially in combination, the name and graphic can be off-putting or even offensive to the users (audience).

– Matt Williams –

My Current Favorite Blog- by Patrice Golbourne

One of the five blogs that I am following is called, CyberText Newsletter by Rhonda Bracely. This is one of my favorite blogs so far because it highlights the errors that people often make with their grammar, punctuation, spelling, etc. This blog also provides some useful tips that can be beneficial for the professional world. One recent post that was made on this blog called, ‘Conference presentation annoyances’, basically explained what not to do at a conference in regards to the person presenting to an audience. There were a lot of tips that I learned that I know will be beneficial for my career field. You should all check it out!

Patrice Golbourne

Tech Comm. Leading Technical Communication

In the article “When Your People Go their Own Way”  by Alexandre Auguste Ledru-Rollin the concept of being a good leader when people are going their own way is covered. When working in groups everything does not always go right as planned. If it were this easy everyone would love working in groups and no leaders would be needed. But this isn’t how a team works and leaders are needed. How though is a leader supposed to lead when everyone goes their own direction? This is a great question covered in the article. The main reason individuals go their own way is because they are human and humans tend to stray their own way instead of your way. Instead of allowing teams to fall apart a few concepts should be looked at to determine the problem. First, maybe you didn’t communicate the goals or objectives of the project and therefore the individuals are unclear of the direction in which they are supposed to progress. Next, maybe you need to give them space and allow them to things their own way. Many great ideas are made this way because everyone be creative in their own sense instead of one key idea from the group. Finally, maybe it’s time to let them go. Not all individuals are meant to work in groups, some are meant to find their own ideas and create their own solutions to problems instead of working in a team. These issues are generally what make or break a team and should be key concepts when building a team or choosing a leader because even though a team may not work it is not essentially the leaders fault it could be the nature of the team and team members.

By Troy Giberson