Content is written by Rev. Micah James, CCA
This week I am attending The Church Network 61st National Conference in the Washington, DC area. According to the TCN Conference website, the conference is described as such:
Our 61st Annual Conference is an engaging, thought-provoking three-day event offering you multiple ways to network with church leaders, find a mentor, get a sneak preview of emerging technology, and hone your skills. You’ll have opportunities to get started on certification requirements and to participate in continuing education.
I have attended this conference three years in a row now. In an age where taking the time to attend an in-person meeting is hard, much less an in-person three-day conference, this is a conference that I make sure not to miss. Now you are probably thinking, “this is about to turn into a commercial…”, but wait… it’s not. The point is meeting in-person is important.
For me, it is this particular conference, but for you, it may be a different setting or topic. The key is the benefit of building personal relationships. When I meet with people in-person, even when I mess up a name or two, I am connecting on a different level than I can in any other way.
In an article with Forbes magazine, Michael Massari, Caesars Entertainment’s Senior Vice President of National Meetings and Events, reflects on in-person meetings and shares that “if we don’t continue to nurture strong and positive personal relationships with our clients and coworkers, we won’t build trust, understanding, or a sense of a shared mission – all of which are critical elements to successful partnerships and business success.” (1)
One of the most important metrics for relationships is authenticity. Authenticity is nearly unmeasurable without a foundational relationship. Nurturing a relationship requires effort, time, trust, and face-time.
The in-person meeting has competition in technology, but let us not give up the investment in our relationships by giving up on this important time of meeting face-to-face.
This conference helps me to have that kind of face time with my church administration colleagues. I hope you can find a time to find face time with those who help you build deep authentic collegial relationships.