National 8(a) Post-Conference:  Get the Date

A couple of months ago I wrote the blog, “A Long Way for Lunch” on the importance of planning ahead before, during, and after an event.  Although this was my first National 8(a) Conference, after having attended hundreds of similar events over the years, the good counsel continues to prove true.  Fortunately, we were there to help many avoid the pitfalls of poor planning, provided actionable tips during the event, and offered relevant follow up activities.   


The matchmaking session, aka ‘speed dating’ at the National 8(a) Conference was high-energy and exciting; however, so many missed the opportunity to schedule a match in advance and found themselves in queue on the periphery, hoping to either catch someone who missed their appointment or waylay their target at the end.  Neither scenario is a good idea as these actions highlight the planning failure and makes a memorable, and negative, first impression.   


For those who did the great work to schedule a session, so many were unsure how to spend their very limited time with their target customer.  As one Agency attendee shared, “the most annoying and quickest mental dismissal of a vendor is the one who shows up at my table and asks, ‘so, what do you do?’”  Know your target customer and be prepared to talk about what matters most to them. 


Finally, and most critical, is the follow up.  If you had the wherewithal to plan your matchmaking in advance and speak what matters most to the customer, do not miss the purpose of it all – the follow up engagement.  If your speed date was a success, getting to the first ‘real’ date should be a walk in the park, but only if you plan your next steps and quickly follow up.    


The TargetGov KickStart Program™ is an affordable, individually customized program, designed to propel businesses into the Federal market and position the organization for success. One of the fourteen key take-aways covered within the KickStart Program™ includes “Event and Engagement Planning and Execution (P&E).”  For more information about the TargetGov KickStart Program™ and how it supports your firm’s growth in the federal market, contact us today! 

800-579-1346 x320 or email  


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