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I'm home, and trying desperately to remember all the people I have to contact about various things. For my much smaller academic conferences, I find I usually want to follow up with 3-4 people, and that's easy enough to mostly keep those names and ideas in my head. But Grace Hopper has a lot of people, and a greater diversity of backgrounds (and thus types of neat ideas to follow up on!) than my usual, and I suspect I'm going to forget some folk.

I was at least proactive enough to get business cards and poken "high fours" to get contact details from the folk I wanted to find. But because GHC is super social, I also got contact info from people who I just want to casually follow on twitter or whose blogs I wouldn't mind reading. I met lots of folk who are just generally neat and who need to be added to things like my personal Technical Women twitter list or connected to on LinkedIn or friended on Facebook. But it's hard to sort out the ones who I need to get in touch with about specific things from those who I'm just glad to have met!

Those of you who have a system, even a messy one, what do you do to make sure you follow up with the people who you need to contact? I'd love some organizational advice here, and lots of it, because I find picking and choosing ideas from many sources often results in something that works really well for me.

Here's a few folk on my list who will be getting another ping from me this week:


  • I need to talk to JR about maybe writing for CompSci Woman because she's totally interesting, and her story about how she got involved in CS is totally unusual, awesome, and really speaks to the power of hanging out with neat women.
  • I need to talk to VB and others about maybe setting up a security track for next year. VB and I were in a talk where it became clear that there's lots of concern and interest in online security, but maybe not as much understanding as we'd have liked. There's lots of women in security @ GHC, so this should be easy ;) (and if you're one of those women, feel free to get in contact with me preemptively so I don't forget you!)
  • Thanks to SD, there's already a mailing list for a neat idea that should be coming out of the impromptu slumber party post sponsor night. I am *so* excited about this!
  • I need to revise my resume and send it to CS and set up potential interview times with this company that seems like it might make it possible for me to work in industry without having to give up all hope of doing research in the short term.
  • I need to revise my CV (which I got amazing help on at GHC10!) and send it off to get a shot at this amazing postdoc working with one of the women who I most wanted to work with in academia.


I'm loving that I have the problem that I interacted with so many cool technical women that I don't know how to contact them all. This is a great problem to have... thanks GHC10!

keeping track

Date: October 4th, 2010 06:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bubbva.blogspot.com
One thing I do is make notes on the back of business cards, though I sometimes forget. I *wish* Poken would have a place you could put notes about yourself so people might remember why they connected with me. For example, I'd put: "Solaris/security geek, blogger, tweeter, author, Purdue graduate in CS, opensource" - just something that might helps someone go, "oh, yeah, now I remember what I wanted to follow up with her about" (and, of course, vice versa!) Guess I need to file a request for feature with Poken :-)

And, yeah, we definitely need to talk!

How I follow up

Date: October 5th, 2010 04:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] feelingelephants.wordpress.com
For me the issue with following up is that I'm self-conscious about grabbing someone's attention online. It's so easy to chat in person, but when I type in their email I know they'll be reading my quick note along with their important work stuff.

To get over this, I try to remember how much I've wanted people I connected with over my poster to follow up with me, and what I would want from them--who they are, where we met, some kind of insight. And I only follow up with people for whom I can provide all of this.

It's pretty messy, but I sent the emails last night so it must work a little!

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