What Will You Take Away?

By Allyson Pahmer

By the time you read this, we will be less than a month away from the PPS Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago, November 1-4. It’s a busy time for me and your staff at the Private Practice Section (PPS), working with the conference hotel and event manager, speakers and app developers, exhibitors and sponsors, vendors, publishers, the audiovisual guys, catering . . . the list goes on and on. But it’s an exciting time, too. Our registration numbers look great, and the exhibit hall sold out in December, which leads me to believe that we are presenting a conference that is worth your time away from home and businesses to come together for another year.

Having recently returned from a terrific conference myself for my own professional development, I know how exciting it can be to feel that Aha! moment when you’re listening to a great speaker or attending a session that finally gives you the answer to that pesky problem you’ve been working on back at the office. We can sometimes get jaded about these opportunities, going in thinking, “There’s nothing here for me to learn” or “I could probably teach this course!” I went into one session thinking, “If I get just one idea from this session, it will be worth it,” and came out with 23 pages of handwritten notes. I was so wrong! It’s difficult to take the time away from the things that we care about, and the demands of home and work, but I came away from my week of learning with so many great ideas and solutions that I’m glad I went.

If you’ve been to a PPS Annual Conference, you know that we present more than 30 sessions for you to choose from, not to mention keynote speakers at the top of their game whose goal it is to get you to the top of yours. Last issue, we ran articles written by two of our keynote speakers—a little tease, if you will, of what you will hear in Chicago next month. Mel Robbins is a CNN legal analyst, best-selling author, and the most booked female speaker in the world. Her talk will focus on striking the elusive balance between work and personal time, and makes an undeniable argument for taking yourself out of autopilot to really focus on you. You can hear her presentation, “The 5 Second Rule: Achieving Breakthrough Performance in Your Career and in Your Life,” on Thursday morning at the conference.

Sally Hogshead is a world-renowned brand consultant and speaker whose research weaves together neurology, economics, history, biology, and pop culture to distill the essence of persuasion. Here, she writes about how “different is better than better” and that the key to reaching your practice’s potential is not in selling your strengths but in selling your differences. Ms. Hogshead’s presentation, “How To Fascinate: From First Impressions to Lasting Value,” will be presented on the final day of the conference.

I hope you will come away from the Conference with that one idea, or those 5 or 10 ideas, that provide you value for the time and money you spend to join us. But of course learning isn’t the only reason to attend. So many of you have formed deep and lasting friendships with your fellow PPS members. The first year I attended it was easy to see the strength of the PPS community and how many of you see Annual Conference as a time to reconnect with old friends. If you haven’t joined us yet, or if it’s been a while, I encourage you to put us on your calendar, if not this year, then next. After having attended only twice myself, I am looking forward to seeing those of you who have quickly become my professional network, the members who I know will welcome me and challenge me (mostly in a good way!) and make the months of hard work ultimately so professionally rewarding. After all, this conference is for all of us—designed for private practitioners by private practitioners—and the work we do at PPS is for you. I look forward to seeing you in Chicago.


Allyson Pahmer
Executive Director, PPS

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