Networking Cocktail Welcome Reception
The warm evening air blew across the desert at sunset, spreading colors across the expanse. The sky was beautiful; and as everyone gathered at the Veranda for the Opening Night’s networking cocktail welcome reception, you could sense the energy grow! After traveling, it was a welcome opportunity to prepare ourselves to transition to the great learning opportunities and fun we’ll have this week!
I was greeted by two smiling, friendly people at the reception desk who checked me in quickly. Everything Office Dynamics does is so organized and well thought out. No confusion here! Each attendee received a lanyard and name badge, which is great for networking purposes, plus a welcome note and drink tickets.
Dressed in business casual chic, there were so many great people pouring into the room! We got down to the business at hand: fun people, great cocktails and tasty appetizers spread on long tables, which were artfully arranged. Wow, it was an awesome spread. Tuxedo-clad wait staff circulated with the most amazing hot appetizers: bacon wrapped scallops, egg rolls and other tasty items. The bar staff quickly spun out an amazing variety of beautiful drinks so we attendees could get busy meeting each other and networking.
The room itself was beautiful, and vibrant music made the flow of energy grow even higher. Joan Burge circulated among the attendees, and of course she was so uplifting and positive with that 50,000 watt trademark smile! I asked her about this year’s conference, and she told me she has so many wonderful special things planned for us… including Joan’s trademark surprises. But since I couldn’t get a single hint about what fabulous things are in store for us over the next few days, I'll guess we'll have to wait and see it first hand. It will be worth the wait!
People streamed onto the beautiful patio, which overlooked the pool area (quite smashing!) as the sun sank and the stars came out to play. It was lovely outside, and people clustered at many cocktail tables and sat in groups on the comfortable outdoor furniture to drink in the views, enjoy the great food and the general ambiance.
People talked excitedly about Thursday’s Gala Dinner. We’ll also be voting for fellow attendees for various categories, such as most congenial, most comedic, best networking, best bright-idea sharing, outstanding professional presence, and creativity. It will be a great night to celebrate everyone being a star!
It was so easy to meet other admins and executive assistants! Everyone was friendly and open. Amazing! We all exchanged entertaining stories, like a great person I met, Nancy Kirkland of Halliburton, who hails from Houston. She went on a Black Canyon River tour, and she expressed how great it was to see Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam. Nancy’s really gifted in social media, and she decided to attend the conference to learn first-hand what other Executive Assistants are doing in the greater national/international workforce. I’m sure she came to the right place to find out, because there are so many different industries and companies represented at this conference.
Speaking of social media, there were cards on the tables that stated, “Keep up with the social buzz!” with the Twitter logo and the tag, #AdminConf (so check it out!)
I met so many fabulous people tonight, and each had an amazing story to share. Gail Kirby, an Executive Assistant at AAA in Arizona, is a first-time attendee this year. Her supportive managers encouraged her to attend Office Dynamics' conference. We had a great time talking about our respective roles within our companies.
Debbie Gross and I met up briefly; we had sat together last year and we both work in the San Francisco Bay area. We commented on the great goal-setting segment held at last year’s conference; each attendee created a personal goal sheet and then had the option to turn them in to the speaker who said she’d mail them back to us in July. Debbie and I talked about how receiving our goal sheets in July confirmed we’d each made progress on our goals over the ensuing months since last year’s conference. Way to go!
I also met two locally-based attendees, Martha and Flo, who work right here in Las Vegas, and we networked together for quite a while. Such great executive assistants!
It was so awesome to experience the energy of these great attendees at the beautiful environment that is Red Rock Resort. I’m so excited and energized to be at this year’s conference and I look forward to tomorrow’s events!