- Networking and meeting peers and establishing new friendships.
- Improving your technical and business skills.
- Learning how the market you work in is changing.
- Meeting new people and building mutually beneficial business relationships.
- Having recognized experts share their knowledge.
- Access to additional sources of information.
- Sharing of ideas and exchanging of information.
- Getting expert advice.
- Improving your interpersonal and communication skills.
- Volunteer! This is the best way to meet new people and feel a part of the conference.
- Join a Special Interest Group (SIG) and get involved in key technology areas.
- Introduce yourself to key leaders of the Users Group and ask them to help you maximize your attending the conference.
Enjoying and staying a part of a users group is like going to high school. If you are a new student, the easiest way to meet people is to join the band, sports team or the debate team. A users group works the same way. A users group is always looking for new volunteers to bring new energy, ideas and enthusiasm to an organization. A users group cannot succeed without great volunteers. User groups are always looking for someone like yourself to get involved. If you attend a technical conference, find out how you can volunteer. It is one of the easiest ways to feel more a part of the organization and get to meet new people. I would also recommend seeking out leaders of the users group and ask them how you can get more involved. Some of the top people in users groups have said they never imagined themselves being a leader of the users group but someone encouraged them and the more they got involved the more they enjoyed it. The more effort you put into joining an organization the more you will get out of it.
The benefits of joining any organization is directly coorelated to how much you get involved. Individuals are often shy, nervous or do not feel comfortable networking at a group they are new to. Volunteering with different organizations is one of the easiest ways to meet new people and feel a part of an organization. Getting involved within a users group offers a lot of benefits.
The Dallas Oracle Users Group (www.doug.org) event November 30, 2007 in Dallas, TX that ran a successful Oracle Boot Camp covering advanced Oracle10g Features as well as topics for Oracle Application DBAs. I have found the Dallas Oracle Users Group to be an outstanding regional organization that does one of the best jobs of blending Oracle technology with the Oracle Applications and business side. The Rocky Mountain Oracle Users Group (www.rmoug.org) also has a great event with their training days. It is a great place to get some outstanding Oracle training. This event is scheduled for February 14 - 15, 2007 in Denver, CO. This is always a great conference. You will find some of the top leaders in the industry at this event. Hint, Colorado also has some great ski locations that are packed with snow this time of year. The event is scheduled in downtown Denver which has one of the best downtowns in the United States. I will also be attending the IOUG COLLABORATION Conference on April 15 - 19, 2007 in Las Vegas. I hope to see you there and hope you have fun and enjoy the conference. The following week Computer Associates is having CA World, April 22 -26, 2007 in Las Vegas. Make sure you take your golf clubs if you go to Las Vegas.
Remember, VOLUNTEER and make a difference to an organization you want to be a part of and reap the benefits of all the networking and fun you will have.