This year at the Museum Computer Network's 2017 annual conference, I'm thrilled to be working with a team of 11 cultural-sector colleagues to address one of the the most persistent problems with any conference—that sinking feeling when all those great, exciting ideas you have during the conference dissipate some time after you've returned to work.

You know what I mean. That inspiring case study on a new API which would be perfect for your museum (as soon as you figure out whom to talk to about it). That workplace trust exercise which would really help your team come together (but how to get your boss to approve it?). That prototyping workshop which a dozen colleagues already liked when you tweeted about it (but you know they'll say they're too busy when you ask them about it back at work).

And that doesn't include the usual bureaucracy, crazy schedules, departments still missing three people because of unfilled positions, lean-towards-saying-no culture, low morale, and that pile of half-written proposals from last year's conference sitting on your desk.

In short, you need a push. A tough push. A gentle, loving, and tough push.

via GIPHY

I'm trying to free … your … mind."

Well, the #MCNergy team is here for you. Or will be, in few weeks. We'll be holding court on Friday, November 10, in the Phipps room of the Omni William Penn hotel, with a rotating group of experienced professionals who are going to help you break down and build up your ideas, turn them into the kinds of proposals that your colleagues back at the museum will love, and be there for you when you need a holographic shoulder to cry on. Every session will have a facilitator and two mentors who will talk through your ideas and help you develop a strategy for making them into action plans. We'll do everything but raise the money.

And all of our confidential, Chatham House rule discussions will be collated (with names and institutions redacted, and other details obscured for your privacy) into a useful guide for future MCN attendees to get the most out of their conference. So no one will ever have to say, a month after the conference, I was so excited about this idea—too bad I wasn't able to do anything with it …

So swing by on Friday, November 10, during any of the five time slots that day, and talk to one of our mentors. Future MCNers will travel back in time to thank you!

via GIPHY

Remember me? I'm your holographic #MCNergy2017 mentor, and it's Hammer Time …

Here's a rundown of the sessions on Friday 11/10, with facilitators, mentors, and some of their areas of expertise–but all questions and drop-ins are welcome!

  • 8:45-9:45 Robert Weisberg, Shaelyn Amaio, Mimosa Shah: community engagement, contemplative spaces/programming, education, empathy, informal learning experiences, interdepartmental collaboration, org culture, program/event planning, project management, publishing
  • 10:00-11:00 Jessica Milby, Andrea Ledesma, Elissa Frankle: building your network, communication, community engagement, cross-departmental influence/action, crowdsourcing, data analysis, data visualization, education, empathy, ethical labor practices, event planning, inclusive practice, interpretation, mentorship, product management, project management, research, social media, strategic planning, team-building, user research
  • 11:30-12:30 Rachel Ropeik, Margaret Sternbergh, Chad Weinard: collaboration, communication, community engagement, conversation strategies, creative participatory strategy, cross-departmental influence/action, design, development, digital collections, education, inclusive practice, informal learning experiences, interdepartmental projects/collaboration/teams, interpretation, org strategy and planning, product/project management, professional development, project management, social media management, strategic planning, technical infrastructure
  • 2:00-2:30 Claire Blechman, Andrea Ledesma, Jessica Milby: advocacy, communication, community engagement, cross-departmental influence/action, DAMS, data analysis, data visualization, education, empathy, event planning, interpretation, mentoring interns, project management, publishing, research, strategic planning
  • 2:45-3:45 Beth Bollwerk, Josh Gorman, Robert Weisberg: education, empathy, inclusive practice, mentoring, org culture, policy development, professional development program/event planning, project management, publishing, research and data analysis

We'll be tweeting about this new all-day session at #MCNergy2017. Read more about the hash-dash tags we're premiering this year for MCN.

And when you're at MCN, make out to check out the other all-day sessions: the MCN Listening Lounge (#MCN2017-ListeningLounge, and they're accepting audio submissions to play in the room that day) on the afternoon of Wednesday, November 8, and the MCN Green Room (#MCN2017-GreenRoom) on Thursday, November 9.

So see you in Pittsburgh next month!