The BETT show is almost upon us, so here are 17 handy hints for first-timers.
Before the show
- Buy comfortable shoes if you don’t already have a pair.
- Plan and check routes to the show, with alternatives in case a service isn’t running on the day.
- Buy a small stapler for affixing your card to exhibitors’ contact sheets, to save having to write your contact details all the time.
- Make sure you ask to be allowed to attend! I list several reasons in my forthcoming BETT guide, eg checking out the best value solutions for your institution.
- Register in advance to save queuing time.
- Think what you would most like to achieve, eg knowledge of what’s available in a certain type of application, learn about something you know very little about, etc. Then plan your visit accordingly, eg book a seminar, plan a route map for yourself.
- Print or have printed a set of business cards.
At the show
- Wear comfortable shoes
- Take a bottle of water with you
- Don’t collect tons of information – have the companies send it to you afterwards
- Whenever you talk to someone, always ask: what have you seen today that excited you?
- Visit the most important (to you) stands first, in case you run out of time or energy.
- At some point, ditch your plan and just wander around – you can see lots you hadn’t realised would be there.
After the show
- Forget about ICT and have a good rest. Go out on a nice day trip somewhere – if you think you have the energy!
- Arrange a meeting with colleagues, eg senior leadership team, or own team, to discuss what was seen at BETT and what the outcomes might be.
- Give relevant feedback or information to other colleagues.
- Follow up online to find out what others are saying: tags are likely to be #bett2012 and bett2012 – and the ICT in Education website of course!
If you found that list useful, you may be interested in my unofficial guide to BETT. Called Getting the best out BETT, it consists of 83 practical tips covering many aspects of BETT:
- 11 Reasons to attend.
- 7 Good reasons to attend: the ones to put to senior management.
- 8 Types of people who should attend.
- 24 Things to do before BETT.
- 17 things to do on the day.
- 7 Things to do after the show.
- 7 Ways to voice your own thoughts about BETT 2012.
- 2 Ways to have your students blog about BETT