In May, I had the pleasure of attending the United Way Community Leaders Conference in Orlando, Florida. The amazing thing about this conference was that I learned a valuable lesson after having to deal with a logistical issue.
You see, the materials for my exhibit booth were somehow lost in transit. As you can imagine, I was quite frustrated, as I discovered that my materials had not arrived when it was time to set up. During the next few days, I experienced a range of emotions as I dealt with the issue. At one point, I was given three different tracking numbers that could potentially be tied to my shipment!
All I had was a small table tent with the MPOWR logo and some photocopied brochures in my briefcase. As the show began, people had to walk up and ask me about MPOWR because I didn’t have a booth display with our branding. What was the amazing lesson I learned? Networking at conferences such as this is really all about people. I still had great conversations and made connections with leaders from all across the United States. A few attendees even checked back with me each day to see if I ever found my materials.
This lesson is an important one when you consider data collection, as well. While it is important for us to help collaborative community impact initiatives report on data, it is helping the people that is critical. How do we best empower individuals to get the support they need to reach their goals? How do we connect case managers across multiple agencies to focus them on the holistic needs of a client? How do we eliminate the data silos that emerge when we focus on our agency data instead of client data?
The good news is that my materials were recovered, even if it was too late for the United Way conference. The great news is that the United Way is focused on collective impact in communities across the country. This was reflected in the conference theme, “United We All Win.” MPOWR is ready to help your community with a collaborative case management system that helps focus on what is truly important – the people