Steve Fenton

The Three Pillars of conference value

The development of your career is, of course, entirely up to you. You need to go out and learn things that are valuable in the marketplace whatever you intend to do in the next few years. The alternative is to give up learning and rust away to nothing.

From the perspective of an organisation, there are three pillars you need to benefit from conferences (or boot camps, workshops, etc).

  • Attendance: you need to actually send people on your own dollar
  • Deployment: you need to let people implement what they learn
  • Reward: you need to acknowledge each individual’s value

Here is a quick summary of the interaction of these pillars.

Conference Pillars

The matrix visualises the impact of your organisation’s investment in people; just because you drop your employees into the “Stagnating” zone doesn’t mean that they aren’t developing their own skills. The object of stagnation is your organisation, not necessarily the people.

There are a surprising number of organisations happy to sit in the “Frustrated” zone. Paying for people to attend, but giving them no opportunity to use what they learn. The only zone that works is the “Engaged” zone, which requires all three pillars.

How would you rate your organisation against this matrix?

Written by Steve Fenton on