So you want to attend Emerge Summit, and ideally, you’ll be able to go on your company’s time and dime in a moment where not all employers may be able to afford to spend. But how do you convince your boss that it’s worth the money and/or time spent out of the office? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!
Here are a few helpful tips on how to convince your boss to send you to the largest young professionals event on the west coast:
Do Your Homework
Before you do anything, do your research. Not only will your boss want to know the costs, the agenda, the speakers (past & current), etc., they’ll want to know what will be the Return On Investment (ROI) from your attendance. If your company is going to invest in you by sending you to Emerge, they’re going to want something in return: for you and the company to become better as a result. So in addition to researching the event logistics, strategize how attending Emerge will benefit your specific career and company.
Write a Proposal
Now it’s time to put that research into writing. Create a short yet strong proposal with details on Emerge, how attending will benefit your performance at work, and a plan to share the wealth of knowledge you acquire with co-workers. This will show your boss that you’ve done your homework and you’re taking this opportunity seriously. This proposal also gives your boss something tangible to refer back to when making a decision.
Timing is Everything
We all know that managers are busy, so keep this in mind when planning your ask. Don’t call your boss after back-to-back meetings or at the end of the day. Chances are your boss is mentally drained at that point and won’t have the energy to listen to what you have to say or make a decision. Instead, schedule a time to sit down one-on-one and discuss the opportunity.
Make the Ask with Confidence
Be direct and get to the point within the first two sentences. You already know you want to go, so now it’s just a matter of using your research to make a strong case. Remember, focus on the tangible takeaways the company will get out of this, like the new partnerships that could come from your networking at the event or the wealth of knowledge (such as skills, perspectives, and frameworks) you’ll be able to bring back and share with your colleagues. If your boss needs time to think about it, this is where the proposal will come in handy.
At the end of the day, it’s all about the ROI. Your boss wants to know that by paying for your ticket and/or signing off on you missing a day of work to attend this conference, it’ll be a good return on investment for the company. If you’re able to state the value of the conference and demonstrate it upon return (such as through an update in a team meeting), your boss will likely feel good about the investment and support your involvement in future Metro EDGE events.