Day Four of HIMSS10. My plan for this day was to tie up any loose ends that needed tying and knock off at noon, taking the remainder of the day to enjoy Atlanta, and my sister, who was driving in from Knoxville to spend the night. I am a firm believer in the “treat yourself at the end of a conference” line of thinking – although it was an exciting, gratifying, productive, and fun week, by this time I was more than ready to wind down and bid HIMSS10 a fond adieu. After two client meetings in the morning, I closed out my week by accepting an invitation to go back over to the Voalté booth, where they presented me with my very own bright pink scrub pants, which trumped, big time, the pens, stress balls, fancy mints, spongy clogs, tshirts, flash drives, coasters, yo-yos, martinis, cappuccinos, and tote bags that were available from many of the other vendors. However, the coolest swag of all, in my opinion had to be the Vespa scooters given away by Health Data Management, although it was going to be much easier to pack my new pink scrubs than the baby blue Vespa that had my name on it.
Heading back to the hotel in the cab, I thought about the primary HIMSS10 takeaways that would travel with me back home. Here are the conclusions I’ve come to this week:
1. I completely and absolutely overscheduled my time at HIMSS10. If you’ve hung out with me via this blog all week, this realization will come as no surprise to you. In my quest to maximize the conference’s very valuable time, I over-estimated my ability to give the best of myself to the many commitments I made. Next year, I will keep this in mind and limit my meetings and social functions to leave more time for educational sessions and unplanned networking opportunities.
2. The overwhelming majority of Healthcare IT professionals are passionate about what they do, for all the right reasons. This may be a sweeping generalization, but all week long, as I met both my previously “virtual” friends and colleagues and was introduced to new comrades, the common denominator, over and over and over again, was that they were excited about making a positive difference in our world. Call me Pollyanna, but that sentiment made me especially proud to be a part of the Healthcare IT industry.
3. The future is bright, and exciting, and we are just beginning a journey that is guaranteed to be an educational, exhilarating, and (dare I say it?) meaningful ride. Fasten your seat belts – the future is ours.