Industry conferences, events and webinars are a key element of business networking and development, with organized events occurring daily across every business vertical around the globe. However, given that many will come with an upfront cost and the loss of employee activity for hours or even days, pitching the prospect of attending to a decision-maker can be a challenge.

Ahead of Interaction, the UK’s leading intranet conference hosted by Interact, we explore the question posed by employers – why should they let you attend your next leading industry conference?

Meet industry experts and influencers

Conferences and events will typically play host to established thought-leaders or influencers, with many presenting on their experiences or ideas and taking questions or feedback from the audience. This offers an unrivalled opportunity to engage with individuals who may be shaping the very future of your industry. Learn from their mistakes and triumphs; deliberate best practice and gain insight into how those who operate at the top level have achieved their success.

The Interaction keynote speakers have now been confirmed; our line-up of globally recognized intranet, communications and engagement experts will be delivering a variety of seminars and talks for attendees, imparting knowledge offering the opportunity to answer questions.

Build skills, experience and motivation

Events are acknowledged as a powerful tool for driving employee motivation and engagement. Attending a seminar or conference can provide the opportunity for you to gain exposure to different tools or approaches, helping to develop your own skillset. Insight into competitor or peer organizations will broaden experience beyond the walls of the office and the process of networking can increase confidence: all of which contribute towards a sharper, more engaged and energized you. What employer can argue with that?

Network and identify opportunities

No matter what the size or nature of an event, each offers the chance to do something technology tends to take away from us: engage face-to-face with peers, prospects and competitors. You can build your standing and profile within your sector, build valuable connections that can support both your personal and professional development or even tap into prospective customers or accounts. Come armed with business cards and pre-check the delegation and exhibitor lists, if available: you never know who you may meet and what value that could have.

Interaction 2016 will play host to a number of exhibitors including Sky Betting & Gaming, the NSPCC and ASOS, showcasing their intranet challenges and successes from across a diverse range of backgrounds and sectors.

Discover industry trends, developments and get inspired

In a technology-driven world where new developments are continual and far-reaching, those who stand still will quickly find themselves falling behind. Events offer insight into up-and-coming trends, research, tools and much, much more: ensuring you gain the necessary insight to stay ahead of the game and drive fresh ideas and development for your own business. If there are particular challenges facing your business that are holding you back from success, perhaps the very answer you’re seeking is in the hands of one of your speakers, or being demonstrated on one of the exhibition stands.

The Interaction schedule is jam-packed with events to match any individual requirements.

Build your argument

The advantages to be gained from attending an industry event are typically ‘soft gains’, making the demonstration of tangible ROI for the upfront cost a tricky process to navigate. Do your research on the event and build a case for attendance; include stats for attendance, name-drop the exhibitors and align the presentations or talks with real-life challenges faced in your role (for example, “I’ve been facing difficulties in overcoming customer objections when trying to cross-sell products over the phone; exhibitor A is going to be delivering a masterclass on objection handling at the event, which I believe could provide some valuable skills to improve my conversion rate.”) Taking the time to build and present your argument will also demonstrate your commitment and interest in the event; all of which will hopefully support you in securing that golden ticket.