Whether you’re first-time EDS participant, or a 20+ year veteran of this unique conference, here are a few suggestions for surviving what is likely to be the busiest three to four days of the year for anyone in the electronic components industry:
• Have a plan for what you want to accomplish at EDS – Because EDS is unlike a traditional industry tradeshow or conference, with most companies having a full schedule of meetings in their suites, advance planning and scheduling are critical to a successful show. Set up your meetings well in advance, and remember to give your contact information to the people you are meeting so you can find each other if your schedules change, as they inevitably do (How did we ever do this before the era of cell phones?).
• Make efficient use of your time at the show – In addition to the “work day,” there are countless other opportunities to meet with colleagues, clients and prospects. Everyone has to eat (and there’s no better city than Las Vegas for restaurants), so why not share the meal and free up another slot in the schedule? (And don’t forget breakfast, the most important meal of the day – especially when your “day” can last well into the night.)
• Stay alert for those chance meetings that EDS is famous for – While you’re in line at a restaurant, or riding in an elevator, or walking the show floor, take note of the name tags of your fellow EDS participants. A quick introduction and a business card exchange could be the start of a new client relationship, a new distributor partnership, or a supplier of that component you need to complete your latest design.
• Stay hydrated – (And I’m not talking about the free drinks on the casino floor.) Las Vegas, in spite of all the lush greenery you’ll see outside (and inside) the hotels, is a desert environment. Carry a bottle of water with you, ask for ice water when you eat at a restaurant, and keep a water bottle in your hotel room. You’ll have fewer headaches and more energy.
• Have an EDS survival tip of your own? Leave a comment! And have a great EDS!