This year, PASS is taking an extra step to help identify first time summit attendees. Most attendees are given ribbons for various recognitions, including Speaker, MVP, Chapter Leader, and other accolades. This year, attendees who are attending the PASS summit for the first time are recognized with a yellow “First Timer" ribbon on their badge to allow those of us who are veterans of the summit to quickly identify those folks. At the end of last year’s summit, I blogged about the need to identify first time attendees so that the rest of us could make a special effort to help them avoid becoming this guy (or gal).
I can see this already working great. I’ve spoken to a number of first timers after seeing them sitting alone at sessions and after hours events, and I see other alumni doing the same. I observed a couple of first timers introducing themselves to one another this morning, sort of a kindred “newbie” spirit union. Hopefully this will help first time attendees to feel more welcome and engaged, and will turn them into serial attendees.