Tips on Surviving NRF 2017

Tim Denman
Editor in Chief
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It is hard to believe it but the end of the year is upon us. It seems like just a moment ago we were all planning summer vacations and lounging around in flip flops and shorts. But like it or not the time has come for winter coats and wool hats, and following the completion of another hectic holiday season the industry will once again turn its attention to the National Retail Federation’s annual Big Show.
As we all prepare for the 106th annual must-attend event I thought it might be a good idea to come up with some tips for surviving what is sure to be an action-packed three days January 15-17. The Big Show can go by in a flash and without some forethought you can be left feeling like you missed out. Below are three keys to getting the most out of your expo experience.
Accommodations. Make sure you stay in one of the many hotels associated with the event. While there are countless lodging options in the Big Apple, taking up residence in an NRF-approved hotel will keep you close to the action, allow you to hop on the free shuttle to the Jacob Javits Center, and afford you plenty of opportunity to network with like-minded folk.
Meetings. You will likely be inundated with meeting requests both before and during the event. The Big Show is a great opportunity to meet with a large number of people in a short amount of time, but be strategic about the meetings you agree to take. Go into the event with a single goal in mind, the one thing you hope to take away from the event, and build your personal agenda around it. Be selfish. Only take meetings that will help you achieve your pre-determined goal.
Sessions. While the 240,000-square-foot show floor will be teeming with next-gen tech, the expo is about more than visiting the solution providers. With over 300 top-notch speakers on the agenda, make sure you take the time to attend at least one or two educational sessions each day. Figuring out which sessions to attend can often be overwhelming, but fear not the editors of RIS News have scoured the agenda and pulled out what we believe are the event’s must-attend sessions.
Be sure to give our annual Big Show preview guide a read before heading over to the show. And don’t forget to have some fun. 
See you on the show floor!

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