How Long Does it Take to Follow Up after a Conference?

As I slowly recover from my Dad 2.0 Summit adventure this weekend, I’m faced with a stack of business cards a mile high.

How long does it REALLY take to follow up after a conference?Every time I attend a conference or convention I end the weekend with the same anxiety: “When am I going to have time to follow up with all these people?”

Understanding the problem is half the solution.

Instead of wallowing in a pool of anxiety and worry, I’m going to get a better grip on what it means to “follow up with all these people.”

And the way I do that is with a little arithmetic and mathematical modeling.

How long does it take to connect with one person?

To find out how long it takes to follow up with one person, I picked a business card from my stack at random. It happened to be from one of the ladies.

It took me 16 minutes to reach out to her. This included the email, researching the site and following her on Twitter.

How many times do I have to do this?

I have 32 more business cards in my stack. I’m going to assume they’re all unique, and that I’ll connect with them in about the same way as I did with Milk.

So to connect with everyone, it will take me

32 people x 16 minutes/person = 512 minutes

I can divide that number by 60 and see that it will take me about 8 1/2 hours to connect with everyone I met at the Dad 2.0 Summit.

Now it’s time to work!

Everyone I met there was pretty amazing. And I’m a lot less anxious now that I know that connecting with all of them will not take forever.

So I’m off to connect!

How about you?

When’s the last time you went to a conference or convention? Were you overwhelmed with the number of contacts you made? Would it have helped to do what I did?

Share your thoughts in the comments. And don’t forget to mention this “convention math” to your kids!


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8 Responses to How Long Does it Take to Follow Up after a Conference?

    • Thanks! I’m looking at a couple of places to get T-shirts made. I would absolutely love the world to be bedazzled with math rhinestone T-shirts.

  1. For some reason we didn’t run into each other during the conference. Feel free to send an email to catch up anyway. It will only take you… 16 minutes 🙂

    • Pedro, I shall!

      And the site to which you linked (and are clearly a part of) looks pretty awesome.

      I keep Daughter’s baby book as a blog. I’ve asked Google not to spider it, but that doesn’t mean they don’t. The only reason I’m not paranoid is because I live in Texas, where men are men, and so am I. (And also where we pretty much ignore anything that’s politically correct. :D)

      A secure, protected site for parents to keep their online baby book sounds like an awesome plan. I’d love to learn more.

  2. my wife is an actuary so as you might expect, there is always a lot of math going on in our home. Anyhow, similar to you, I sat at my desk this morning overwhelmed with what to do with these business cards from the dad 2.0 summit. Glad I read your post – nice to know I’m not alone…and enjoyed your practical approach. I think I’ll try to squeeze in one or two per day.
    – Lance

    • I’d love to know how you’re doing, Lance. I’m an extremist and so one or two per day doesn’t really work for me.

      I’ll probably need to stay up all night long and do them in one fell swoop.

      Of course I have five other conference follow-ups to do for last year, too. Perhaps first I need to go back and finish Brené Brown’s book – I can get pretty mired in shame when I start to think of all the things that I “should be doing”.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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