- Pay conference organizer a significant amount of money
- Receive daily spam from conference organizer daily for 90 days leading up to the event
- Receive volumes of spam and spurious phone calls from vendors ‘really wanting to meet you’ and realise the conference organiser has provided all your details to all the exhibitors.
- As the departure day approaches realise you actually probably don’t need to spend three days looking at various ethernet switches and you probably have a lot more important things to do, but it’s too late to get a refund now. Even worse you realise there are some people going (possibly even from your own organisation) that you don’t relish spending three days locked up in a hotel or conference center with.
- Get up at 5am, queue 2 hours for security screening, plane delayed, try unsuccessfully to get a wifi signal to do email for an hour.
- Sit on plane while pushed back and out of touch as we missed our takeoff slot.
- Fly 2-6 hours depending on venue.
- Register at venue. Put on your mandatory name tag labelling you as vendor prey for the duration.
- Register at awful hotel (if you’re lucky and they have a room/haven’t lost your registration)
- Attend exhibit hall. Look at ethernet switches until your brain is numb
- Look at something that looks like it’s something other than an ethernet switch but find out it is after all, just an ethernet switch but a different shape.
- Have people take your business card every 5 paces. Your incoming spam email velocity increases 20% per hour. Your blackberry is behaving like an angry wasp.
- To alleviate the boredom, look at a router
- Pretend to be on the phone to prevent sales attacks
- Repeat steps 6-10 until you can’t carry any more literature or the venue closes. Mercifully your blackberry battery has run out by now.
- Attend conference. After the keynote speech realise all other presentations are thinly veiled sales pitches for ethernet switches or routers (see 7 & 9 above)
- Unless you like being shouted at, befriended, etc by inebriated ethernet switch purchasers, stay away from post conference parties or events that involve ethernet switch manufacturers providing free alchohol
- Repeat steps 6-13 for the duration of the conference, then do 1-3 again on the way home.
- Recycle all conference material
- Tighten up your spam blacklist
- Change your phone number
- Vow never to do it again
- Pick up a piece of spam from the massive stack on your desk and as you go to throw it away realise it’s for a rather interesting conference on wireless access points .. well.. it is three months away, I can always change my mind … .