11 NTC Recap
Picture 2,008 registered attendees plus attendants (vendors, security, porters, attendees, mechanics, staffers) — think multitudes — all in motion, milling between multiple levels and venues in the cavernous Washington Hilton — think Ronald Reagan was almost assassinated here — bristling with tools, toys, gadgets, more smart devices per square inch than in J&R showroom; and we are here amongst them at our first national conference for WebServes, and we are smiling (like most of the others). Three days of conferencing: chats, buffets, snacks, bad coffee, worse wifi, workshops, intros, outros, cards, notes, swag, onesheets, open bar, closed shops, and then it’s past.
What can I say about the 11NTC conference? When debriefed by colleagues and staff back in FiDi — insider code for the lowest district of Manhattan — I could offer little in coherent and salient takeaways, except a buzz, a pulse of energy that carried through geographical and temporal “space” to signal a connection to a great many passionate and committed people trying to accomplish good with our newest tools, a kind of social technology. I remain abuzz with renewed energy and lashed commitment to pursue our mission — empowering through technology — but it’s changed. What’s changed is the perception of a community of interest that we are amidst and can draw from and to which we contribute. We are no longer alone. We have people to talk to and people who can talk to us.
An additional note, I discovered a new term to define our organization at 11NTC: TSP (Technology Service Provider), an organization that helps nonprofits utilize technology to promote their mission and reach their audience. WebServes is more exceptional than most TSPs in that we are a non-profit that assists other nonprofits, since most TSPs are for-profit entities.
Lastly, here are some key takeaways from the conference that I’d like to share:
- Social media is the gateway to future online supporters and funders.
- Keep your Twitter, Facebook, and blog pages up to date, and don’t forget to respond to comments or retweets.
- Utilize the tools that are offered by Google for Nonprofits.
- Use technology to organize your team (shared calendars, dashboard tools, etc.)
- Remember to take advantage of the many resources available through NTEN itself. They are around every day, not just to produce conferences like this!
En solidaritas digitalis,