When you decide to attend a panel or seminar in which a good friend is sitting on, please send them a notice that you will be checking them out.  Not only it is a courtesy, but you may be doing them a favor.

True story.

I saw a seminar listing in which a few of my friends were panelists, which immediately made me move my schedule around so I could attend.  I sent both of my buddies a note that I was looking forward to seeing them.  One of the friends called me back and was confused.  “What panel?”  I explained what I knew and forwarded the email that I received.  That person didn’t have the panel on their schedule, because the organizers mentioned it in passing…at a social event.  And the organizers never sent any confirmation notices.  My friend has a busy life and thriving practice, which is why they were invited to be a panelist.  I’m sure they were gonna blow it off, but I mentioned that it was over capacity. My friend then rearranged their schedule to make sure they honored that “commitment.”

Sometimes we all think we did everything on our list.  Sometimes things fall through the cracks.  The organizers weren’t trying to be unprofessional…they just thought they crossed all t’s and dotted every i.  But that lack of follow-through would have made my friend look very unprofessional.

My fellow networkers, sometimes we have to make sure our friends know what is on their own itineraries.