This Friday is the Early Bird deadline for the HOW Conference, when the regular rate will jump not-so-significantly from $935 to $955. Which prompts us to address the question that many people start asking around this time of year, even on this very blog’s forum: Is it worth it?
Seeing as we’re now seasoned conference attendees, we thought we might be able to address some of the issues associated with forking over almost a grand for a design conference. That doesn’t include transportation and lodging, but since the conference is in Vegas this year, we’re not going to take that into consideration. It’s not like you’re going somewhere lame.
1. For any conference, you’ve got to look at the programming. It feels like there are approximately four million design conferences occuring on any given day. Do some research; this might not be “the one.” If you’re looking for real-life design advice, computer tips and hands-on workshops, no other conference does this better than HOW.
2. Actually, conferences are not really about programming. It’s more about who you sit next to at lunch, who you’re in the beer line with, who you introduce yourself to because you like their shoes. So many people go to these things and complain that they didn’t get anything out of it. Guess those are the same people we see slumped on the floor, making friends with their laptops between sessions. If you’re not into meeting and greeting, a conference is not going to do much for your career.
3. Ask your boss! We’re guessing your work will consider splitting the cost with you. If you don’t have a boss, ask your accountant! Some of these costs could fall under the “continuing education” clause of your tax return, meaning it’s 100% deductible.
4. HOW offers single and multiple day tickets, which could be a great idea if you’re still on the fence. Pick the day with the speaker you really want to see, go to that night’s party, work it, and start saving for next year.
5. If you really can’t make it, don’t despair. We’ll be there, blogging our little fingers off, for you.