My First ALA Conference

Attending the American Library Association (ALA) conference was a memorable occasion for me as the new Product Manager at Solus. It gave me a great opportunity to expand my network and to build connections with colleagues and clients in person.

SOLUS exhibit at the ALA Conference

Here are my key takeaways from the event :

For those of us who work at a remote first company, one that has employees all around the world, meeting in person is not always an option. ALA provided a unique opportunity to connect with my colleagues. It also presented the opportunity to connect with clients, exchange ideas, and to network with fellow professionals in the industry. Make sure you take the time to exchange contact information 

There was so much offered at the conference this year. Book signings, meet and greets, and workshops just to name a few. Make sure you take the time to review the official conference schedule and map layout beforehand to stay organized. Identify which sessions and events align with your interests

Solus was lucky to co-host a cocktail party with four other vendors. I might be biased, but I consider it a success. Whether you are coordinating your own event or attending a pre-planned one, make sure you give yourself the opportunity to engage with like-minded professionals in a more relaxed and social setting. These events provide a valuable platform for networking, building relationships, and creating lasting memories and friendships. Be open to meeting new people. 

The exhibit hall at the ALA Conference serves as a hub of innovation, presenting an array of cutting-edge technologies and services that will continue to change library operations. Take the time to navigate the aisles to engage with other vendors, discover innovative solutions, and learn how to transform the way libraries operate.

I learned this lesson the hard way. You will meet and talk with so many people over the course of the conference. Having a notepad to write down quick notes will help you remember important mentions in the future.

As I reflect on my time in Chicago, I am grateful for the knowledge gained, the friendships formed, and the inspiration sparked. The ALA Conference has left a lasting impression on me, motivating me to continue pushing boundaries to make a positive impact in our communities. Whether you are a seasoned professional or attending for the first time, I highly recommend the ALA Conference in 2024.


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