Saturday, 27 April 2013

Conference build-up 2

Conference Drinks Reception in Cardiff
Central Library - 2012
Conference Dinner !?*! The social animals will flock to this annual celebration of the information community in Wales. Those of us who are not quite so extrovert may fear and dread it. But as a seasoned professional, and someone who most definitely is a "wallflower", let me assure you that your reservations and concerns will soon be quashed and left  at the door. If you have the opportunity to attend, you are most definitely destined for an enjoyable evening!

Conference Dinner and its preceding Drinks Reception mark the end of a hectic day of attending inspiring and informative sessions, meeting new people, and finding out about new suppliers and their products. The networking and professional conversation continues into the evening, aided by the relaxed atmosphere of fine food and drink.

For many delegates the Drinks Reception and Conference Dinner  will be an opportunity to renew old friendships, to take stock of the year that has been and to look forward to things to come. For conference "first timers" the welcome will be equally  friendly. CILIP Cymru Wales Annual Conference deserves its reputation as "the friendly conference".

Not yet convinced? Perhaps this Q&A may help:

Who is invited? All full conference delegates and trade representatives, plus day delegates who have purchased their additional attendance at the Drinks Reception and Dinner.

Dress code? There is no formal dress code but most people wear "smart formal". Most importantly you should feel comfortable and confident in what you wear.

Where and when? Thursday 16th May at 6.30pm in Cardiff Central Library. This is very close to the Radisson Blu Hotel (the conference venue). If you are really unsure of where to go please ask a Conference Helper or Committee Member. Groups of delegates will  meet in the Hotel Reception and walk over together. The dinner is back in the Radisson Blu Hotel conference suite and starts at 7.30pm.

Anything special I should look out for? Lots!

  • If you haven't seen Cardiff Central Library before then you are in for a treat!
  • Drinks in the Library, with the book shelves as bars (see image above)
  • The Tir na n-Og Award ceremony - this occurs during the Drinks Reception. More information about this here.
  • The inaugural Welsh Librarian of the Year Award - after the conference dinner.

What won't there be? A disco, quiz or other party games. This is just a relaxed, friendly, chatty evening.

Any further tips? 

  • Fearful of your networking skills? You could do far worse that read Jo Alcock's excellent blog "Networking for introverts" and try some of her tips!
  • First-timer? Arrange to meet other first-timers by contacting them on Twitter beforehand (use the hashtag #cilipw13). Alternatively, talk to a conference helper or committee member and ask them to introduce you to a few people. Talk to the speakers, workshop presenters and trade representatives. They will all be delighted to talk to you. Read the delegate list and aim to meet people who work in a similar role to you.
  • Unless you are really brave, arrange to sit next to someone you know at the Conference Dinner. Seating isn't allocated, so you can chose where to sit.
  • Most importantly, relax, be yourself and enjoy the evening.

CILIP Cymru Wales Annual Conference justly deserves its reputation as "the friendly conference".

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