Take Aways from Presenting at a National Conference
Just finished presenting "Beyond the Couch: Using MFT skills with Organizations" at the national conference for the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT). The presentation was delivered in a pre-conference, 5 hour, "institute" held in Atlanta at the Marriot Marquis.
This pre-conference institute requires attendees to come a day early, pay an additional $175, occur additional costs of an extra day in training, and be willing to commit from 9-3:30 to this training. We had good turnout with 35-40 attending.
As an educational endeavor, I am listing the learning I got from presenting this institute. Incidentally, If you are a member of our FONS group (a private Facebook group) or a subscriber to my email list then I will give you some more personal insights later that I won't share publicly.
Here a some of my take aways . . .
Things I kind of knew that were re-confirmed:
- Therapists are some of the nicest people to have in a presentation
- The interest in working on contract, avoiding the insurance market, and working with organizations is growing
- There is still little, or no, training in masters programs on business skills, contracting, or working with organizations
- There is a strong interest in learning the tools and techniques of developing contracts
- Therapists don't know where to find mentors when it comes to contracting and working with organizations
- Seasoned therapists get requests to help with organizational issues whether they are trained in this area or not
What should I have known, that i learned:
- Teaching people, even highly skilled therapists, how to do contracting takes more than 5 hours
- People are going to be interested in connecting personally with me for support
- I need a plan to capture the contact information of those who show interest in connecting
- People are going to want to buy my book, from me, right there at the conference
- There always is at least one attendee who already has extensive experience as a consultant who is present just to get new ideas
- There are decision makers present, often with funds, that may be looking for ways to enhance their program offerings.
What I still don't know . . .
- Is it worth losing two days of revenue, paying for the cost of a plane ticket etc., the time to develop the presentation, and paying for the cost of the conference (really? the presenter has to PAY to attend their own presentation?!?!)
- As a corollary, to the point above, will I ever present at the AAMFT conference again?
- Will the institute have an impact? Will there be any follow through for attendees who expressed interest in developing their own contracts and consulting?
- Will the attendees who expressed an interest in coaching, training, connecting, follow through with contacting us?
- Did the institute give attendees enough to go out and develop their first contract?
We are finalizing our 2018 schedule for training, consulting, etc. The next opportunity to get in on learning about contracting and consulting is in the Interactive CE Training (ICET) Dr. Miller will be presenting on-line October 29th. I
To reserve time for a presentation or coaching, contact Bryan directly.
For those interested, we also have two products to help therapists get started.
Beyond the Couch: Dr. Miller's seminal book on consulting with organizations.
Private Practice through Contracting: an eBook to reduce insurance dependency and help develop contracts as part of a private practice.