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5 reasons to convince your boss to send you to TEDWomen this year

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Inspiration, challenge, community — when we listen to great ideas together, great things can happen. Photo: Stacie McChesney / TED

Every year at TEDWomen, we gather to talk about issues that matter, to learn and bond and get energized. This year, we will be reconvening on November 1–3 in New Orleans — and we would love for you, and your amazing perspective and ideas, to join us and become part of this diverse, welcoming group that’s growing every year.

Join us at TEDWomen 2017 >>

However, there’s a challenge we’re hearing from some of you — especially those who’d like to attend in a professional capacity. And it’s this: It’s hard to explain to your boss how this conference can contribute to your professional success and development.

What we know from past attendees is, TEDWomen is an extraordinary professional development event — sending people back to work refreshed, connected and full of ideas. We’d love to encourage more people to attend with professional growth in mind. So, if you’re interested in attending TEDWomen, here are some talking points to support you when you ask for your share of the staff-development budget:

1. At TEDWomen, you’ll learn tools to craft better messages, to listen and connect more deeply, to problem-solve and spark new ideas. What you hear onstage — and from fellow attendees — will spark new thinking that you can bring back to your team. (Many TEDsters, in fact, schedule a team meeting for the week after TED to download what they learned.) As one attendee wrote: “Amazing and inspiring overall. I’m leaving a better person because of it.”

Join an audience of curious and enthusiastic lifelong learners and doers. Photo: Marla Aufmuth / TED

2. TEDWomen is where some of the boldest conversations are happening — which can help you kickstart the conversations your organization needs to have. You’ll hear about new markets and new power structures, learn how people are engaging with diversity internally and externally, and get new ideas for leveraging technology. Because you never know where your company’s next great idea may come from. As one attendee told us: “I am a VP at a Fortune 500 company and this conference was life-changing for me. There are so many execs who have the experience, money and resources to help drive the causes that were discussed.”

3. The TEDWomen community is a powerful network, offering connections across many fields and in many countries. VC Chris Fralic once described the benefit of attending TED in four words: “permission to follow up.” TEDWomen is not a place for high-pitched networking — it’s designed to be a place to connect over conversations that matter, to plant seeds for collaborations and real relationships. As one attendee said: “I connected with so many people with whom I am able to help grow their work and they are going to work with me to grow mine. I think it is terrific that TED provides such meaningful resources for attendees to connect and converse.”

Well, we make no promises that you too will get a selfie with Sandi Toksvig, left, host of the Great British Bake Off, but yes, connections like this happen at TEDWomen all the time. The audience and speakers are all part of the same amazing community. Photo: Stacie McChesney / TED

4. Finally, it’s just a great conference — offering TED’s legendary high quality, brilliant content and attention to detail at every turn, at a more approachable price. Attendees tell us things like: “Single best and most diverse event that I’ve been to” and “It was a truly immersive, brilliant experience that left me feeling mentally refreshed and inspired. This was my first TED, and I can see why people get addicted to coming back year upon year.”

5. You don’t have to wait to be invited. In fact, consider this blog post your invitation to TEDWomen. We truly want to diversify and grow the audience for this conference, to increase the network effect that happens when great people get together. Come join us for what one attendee calls “a truly transformative conference and experience. TED has become a very important part of my CEO/executive life in feeding my soul!”

Apply to attend TEDWomen 2017 — we can’t wait to meet you!

We hope to see you at TEDWomen, where our awesome audience is as vital to the magic as any speaker on stage. Photo: Marla Aufmuth / TED