Approval to Attend

Funding Approval Success Tips
(or: How To Convince Your Boss)

Sometimes it's tough convincing the boss to let you spend the money on a conference. Sometimes it's tough convincing the boss to let you spend the time on a conference.

Make the Deal Numerical
Agree that if the boss will let you go, you will commit to
improve ( some KPI )
by ( some percent )
in ( some time frame )
after you get back.

Find Another "Boss"
Thanks to Liz Donaldson <donaldsn@kodak.com> for this one:
Seek out the groups in your organization who benefit from your knowledge, then find their boss. Prepare a solid business justification. Email and visit in person the list of target bosses. Borderline on being a pest. They may finally approve the expense just to make you go away. Always have a list of spare bosses in your pocket in case you need them. Before you know it, you have an email thread going between bosses who are willing contribute to the expense.

Show enthusiasm, sincerity and volunteer to sleep in your car, share a room or walk to the conference to reduce the expense. Assuming success, follow-up after the conference with the same list of target bosses, regardless of their contribution. Make sure you have memorable and timely information sharing sessions after the conference. Remember, you want to attend the conference again next year.

Feed Them Thanks to Alex.Cohen@refinery.com

39% Cookie Deletion!

39% Cookie Deletion!

Bosses love efficiency. Bosses also love food. If you combine the two, you've got a powerful selling point for approval: a Web Analytics Lunch & Learn. When you invite your boss, promise to create a presentation about what you learned at the eMetrics Summit - which you will deliver with tasty sandwiches - to your coworkers. You get to go to Washington D.C. and your boss gets to rationalize the expense as training for the whole department or company! (You can even use actual cookies to talk about cookies, because everyone likes desserts).

Find a Different Color of Money
Budgets are tight all over, but not all budgets are created equal. While your department may not have any discretionary coin for web analytics, there may be a different fund somewhere that can cover a few days of a conference. Talk to your colleagues about possible resources available under different names:

  • Education
  • Training
  • Seminars
  • Conferences
  • Travel
  • New Projects
  • Special Projects
  • Software Evaluation
  • Infrastructure Improvement
  • Executive Leadership
You never know until you ask.

Tough Times Call for Tough Measures
We have more work to do than ever before and we're still short on resources. Shouldn't we be taking a hard look at whether the work we're doing is the right work to be doing?

Manage By Objective
In order to know whether we're doing the right work, we need to know what our objectives are. In order to know what our objectives are, we need to know what others are achieving online. Where else are we going to get web measurement best practices?

Stake Your Reputation On It
My department's morale is low at the moment. We know the web is capable of great things, but we want to quantify it. We want to implement some specific metrics that will show how the work we're doing is making a difference.

Making the Most of What We've Got
The web services organization has been cranking out reports for lo, these many years. It's time the people who are trying to accomplish things online understood those reports. It's time we learn which metrics are most important so we can accomplish more.

Where Else Can We Find Good People?
We're in the process of ramping up our web analytics department and we need to hire new resources. Spending a few days with a bunch of experienced people is a much better way to get to know them than interviewing each one for an hour.

Where Else Can We Train the Good People We've Got?
The eMetrics Summit starts out with an official Web Analytics Association Training Day. It then has three days of four simultaneous tracks covering the whole spectrum of online success measurement. There's no better way to get all of our people up to speed this fast - and there's a Bring the Team Discount for every Summit.

Show Off Some Specific Goals
This is where you get to put yourself on the line. Show your boss a list of your personal objectives. Include things like:

  • Bring back three different ideas on how to solve our _____ problem.
  • Meet three people to add to my personal network who are knowledgeable about ___.
  • Identify the two technologies we should seriously consider in the next three months.
  • Go to three sessions that are outside my area so I understand the Big Picture better.
  • Find no less than four consultants who can help us.
  • Find two or three potential new hires.
Need to convince yourself?
Wandering the halls of your business is an unlikely way to find somebody who understands your concerns and your worries about integrating web data with customer relationship management data and customer satisfaction data. The eMetrics Summit offers a conference full of them.

Let's Make a Deal
Bob Britz, Master Certified Business Coach wrote in and said:

I read your insert on how to convince your boss - being the boss I didn't find anything that addresses the business needs, pain, or upside of having someone attend the conference. Do you have anything like that talking to business reasons and objectives?

Bob was right on the money. Here's my response:

Explain how the eMetrics Summit is full of presentations, workshops and lab sessions that show how to raise revenue, lower costs and increase customer satisfaction. Then make a deal. If you can go to this conference, you will come back with five eye opening ideas, tried and true techniques or proven processes that will demonstrably improve your marketing ROI. Go read the blogs about previous eMetrics events and you'll see this is an easy win. How will you provide evidence that these ideas are working? eMetrics is all about measurement, all the time.

Got Tips?

Tell me what you said to convince your boss and help others as they beg, beseech and entreat their bosses to fund their participation.