GroundFloor Media & CenterTable Blog

I recently attended the Mayo Clinic and Ragan Communications’ second annual Health Care Public Relations, Marketing and Internal Communications Social Media Summit in Jacksonville, Fla., and it got me thinking about the value of professional development. It’s so easy to get so wrapped up in our day-to-day work and our hectic schedules – and often, taking time out for professional development falls to the bottom of our priority list. It sounds like a lovely idea, but who has the time???

My experience at the Mayo/Ragan conference reminded me of the importance of stepping back and taking the time… the time to learn from renowned leaders in the field, the time to share ideas with industry colleagues, and the time to get re-energized about the work we’re doing.

For me, the conference was extremely valuable in that it served to validate that, as an agency, GroundFloor Media has stayed on the proverbial leading-edge when it comes to counseling our health care clients about social media. At the same time, I learned a variety of new tips, tricks and tools from both the speakers and my fellow attendees as we discussed approaches we’ve taken, issues we’ve faced, etc. And, indeed, I returned to Denver energized and excited to share this expanded knowledge with my co-workers and apply it to strategies for clients.

I am grateful that GroundFloor Media places such an importance on professional development – whether it’s membership in a professional organization or participation in a webinar, a local industry group luncheon, or a multi-day workshop in another city. We are encouraged to identify opportunities that will help us strengthen our expertise – and then to take the time to participate in them and share what we learned during a subsequent internal staff lunch & learn.

In addition to the conference I recently attended, one of my colleagues is currently at a conference focused on internal communications. Three of us will be attending a monthly breakfast for health care communicators next week, and yet another is planning to attend a travel-focused social media conference early in 2011. Many of us are also active members of professional organizations including the Colorado chapter of PRSA, Colorado Healthcare Communicators and the Public Relations Global Network (PRGN). All of these activities are invaluable when it comes to ensuring that we continue to stay abreast of the latest trends and developments in the PR/marketing communications industry.

~ Amanda Brannum

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