So here’s a bit of tactical advice on getting your manager to send you to HOW Design Live in 2023: it’s not about you. It’s about how your entire team—in fact, your company—will benefit from the information and insights you’ll gain.

Make a game-plan, create your story and leverage your communication skills.

STEP 1 — Be Prepared

  • Review the full HOW Design Live program and map out your customized conference agenda. Choose a mix of sessions that benefit you personally and that can expand your whole team’s expertise and improve your work.
  • Download this persuasive letter for your boss. Include the sessions you’d like to attend, and name-drop some big-time speakers. (If your boss isn’t a designer, be sure to include some of the top brands that will be represented.)
  • Ready your argument that attending HOW Design Live will make you a bigger asset to your company.

STEP 2 — Pick the Right Time to Talk About It

  • Lay the groundwork with the letter, then schedule a brief meeting to state your case in person.
  • Explain the ROI on sending you to the event.
  • Tell your boss you’ll bring back best practices from leading brands including Amazon, EOS, Pentagram, IBM, and more.
  • Tell your boss about the sessions focused on branding, marketing and communication—skills that will complement your awesome capabilities as a designer.
  • Tell your boss HOW Design Live packs a full year’s worth of value into just 3 days.
  • Walk through the conference website together to review the program and speaker lineup.

STEP 3 — Leverage Your Communication Skills

Impress your boss with your marketing and communication skills by crafting a powerful campaign to win their approval.

Objection: “It’s too expensive.”

Your response: “This isn’t just a three-day event. Its benefits will carry over through the rest of the year and beyond, so it’s a great value. I’ll capture detailed notes from every session, so our whole team can learn along with me. Plus, with a virtual conference pass, I’ll have continued access content to sessions on-demand and can continue learning for months to come.”

Objection: “You can’t be away from the office for three days.”

Your response: “I won’t be totally away from the office; with free wifi during the event, I’ll be able to stay connected at the same time I’m gathering information and best practices that will take our team’s work to the next level.”

Your closing argument: “When I wrap up at the conference, I’ll schedule a download session with you and the team. I’ll present my notes and speaker handouts from all the sessions I attended. I’ll recommend new ideas for our workflow, teamwork, processes, the way we work with our clients. I’ll show you all the great resource material I found in the virtual Exhibit Hall from vendors who can save us money. Sending me to the conference means elevating our whole team — and when our work improves, you look good, too.”