FinCon17 Recap: The Conference That Doesn’t Sleep

Last week was an extraordinarily busy one. I attended not one, but two international conferences that are the largest of their kind in their respective fields: the American Society of Anesthesiologists Annual Meeting and FinCon17.

Over the course of eight days, I attended 40 to 50 hours of lectures, panels, workshops, and seminars. I learned a lot, talked a lot, and met so many wonderful people. If not for this new part-time schedule, I would have had a tough time making both conferences, and certainly would not have had a few days off both before and after to prepare for and recuperate from them. Hooray, Financial Independence!

 

A Tale of Two Conferences

 

The ASA meeting is huge. Attendance is in the 15,000 range, with 25% of them international attendees. There are only about ten cities with a convention center and infrastructure to support such a gathering.

FinCon, while growing each year, is an intimate gathering by comparison. 1,700 people including a lively Australian contingent, sophisticated European visitors, and of course a friendly bunch of Canadians made the trek to Texas for FinCon17.

I knew very few people at the ASA meeting. I could probably count on my fingers and toes the number of people I knew personally and connected with at the Boston conference. There were a number of others that I knew of because I’d seen them speak before or because they’re “anesthesia famous,” but they don’t know me, so I didn’t interact with a ton of people.

I did make some great connections at a Boston blogger meetup (Chief Mom Officer, Actuary on FIRE, Laurie of the Three Year Experiment, and “EnRon“) — get used to the namedrops — many more coming — and I met a few more great people at a reader meetup at Harpoon Brewery. My residency program hosted a reception at a swanky joint, and I enjoyed getting to know a number of the current residents and spouses, while also catching up with former resident colleagues and faculty teachers of mine.

I may have only known about 0.1% of those wearing the ASA badge, but at FinCon17, I was at least “internet familiar” with a good 20% of the guests. And by that, I don’t mean that we both swiped right on Tinder (or is it left?) but that we’ve been reading each other’s sites, interacting on Twitter, and / or exchanging e-mails. There were so many people I was excited to meet in person, and none of them would disappoint. Well, none except Carl.

 

Fincon Y'all

fincon y’all

Overview of FinCon17

 

Looking for the orange DART train at one of the most ridiculously designed airports I’ve encountered, we came across a friendly couple and one of them happened to be wearing a FinCon shirt. My wife and I had a good chat with Romeo Jeremiah and his wife on the one hour and two minute train ride into downtown Dallas.

We checked in at the Sheraton Dallas, registered for the conference, and were off to our first scheduled dinner with the White Coat Investor and his team of helpers that I have decided to refer to as Dahle’s Angels. They’re a delightful group of gals and great company for my wife when the good doctor and I start talking shop.

The next three days, I was pretty diligent about going to sessions throughout the day while my wife enjoyed some Dallas highlights, including the Sixth Floor (JKF) Museum, the Dallas Holocaust Museum and the Dallas World Aquarium.

Many bloggers like to say it’s best to skip most of the talks and just hang around the hallways and grand hall chatting with people. You’ll have time for more in-depth conversations and will make connections with people that you might otherwise miss, and you can always watch videos of the talks later.

I agree with the logic, but I also know me, and I know how unlikely I am to actually watch videos of the talks later. So I sat in on the sessions and still managed to meet almost everyone I hoped to bump into.

At any given time, there were two to five sessions, so you can’t take them all in. For this reason, I’m glad I’ll access to the videos of talks I missed so I can at least tell myself I might watch those after the conference. But I probably won’t.

 

fincon shirts

so much for minimalism

 

The exhibit hall was chock full of vendors handing out sweet swag. I came home with a half-dozen high quality tees from various companies. Between those and the shirts bloggers have mailed me (thank you Retirement Manifesto and ESI Money), the shirts the Student Loan Planner and Mad Fientist (pronounced feentist, apparently) hooked me up with at the conference, and the one promised to be coming soon (I’m a large, ChooseFI), I could wear nothing but blogger, podcaster, and finance industry shirts for days on end.

 

FinCon17 by Night

 

There was a lot going on during the daylight hours, but I was forewarned and can now confirm that FinCon is the conference that does not sleep. I actually did a pretty good job of adhering to the “nothing good happens after midnight” routine, but that kind of fell apart Saturday night. But it was Saturday night. I guess that makes it alright. And you say “What have I got to lose?”

Thursday evening, we had what has got to be the largest gathering of physician bloggers and podcasters in the history of mankind. The Press Box Grill played host to a group that included:

 

 

Physician Bloggers

image credit: FutureProofMD

 

The following evening, my wife and I had a pleasant dinner over spicy Mexican food. We were invited by a small group that included The Biglaw Investor and Travis the Student Loan Planner. These guys are doing amazing work with their sites, and it was great to pick their brains and contemplate what we can do to best serve our audiences as our combined reach continues to grow.

On Saturday, I was able to catch the beginning of my beloved Golden Gophers football game before having to run off for the 8th Annual Plutus Awards.

At the awards ceremony, I didn’t take home a trophy, but I was honored to be one of five finalists for both the Best Financial Independence / FIRE blog and Best New Personal Finance Blog. Congratulations to the winners of those, and to all the Plutus Award winners!

Although I didn’t win, and the Gophers didn’t win either, it was still a fun night. Highlights of the awards ceremony included:

  • “The Floor” sketch culminating in a live performance from an American Idol contestant
  • An ingenious drinking game for our emcee Bethany Bayless with a sip for each absent winner.
  • Crowd singing “Happy Birthday” to Mindy Jensen of Bigger Pockets (I started that one).
  • Crowd chanting “Chug Chug Chug” to Bethany as she announced the final absentee winner (J. Money started that one, and yes, she chugged).

 

“Then after the show, it’s the after-party. Then after the party, it’s the hotel lobby…” – R. Kelly

 

The after-parties and hotel lobbies were crowded with conference goers who completely ignored their normal bedtimes. I thoroughly enjoyed a rare beer share hosted by Gwen the Fiery Millennial and Erik the Mastermind with fantastic beers supplied by The 1500s, The Mad Fientist, the WoWs, and many more. Weary of turning into a pumpkin spice porter, we retired just as midnight was approaching, but I hear the party carried on well into the wee hours.

After a quiet Friday evening (for us), PT & company threw a rockin’ costume party to close out the conference on Saturday night. There were Wall Street statues and movie characters, rock stars — with J. Money’s wife pulling off a perfect Avril Lavigne, but my favorite costumes were bloggers being other bloggers, such as:

I could have pulled off a decent Mr. Money Mustache, but my wife and I coordinated to be Maverick and Charlie from Top Gun.

 

maverick charlie costumes

Photographer: J.D. Roth. Thank you, friend!

 

Best of FinCon17

 

Where do I begin? I’ll start with the moment that was repeated often over the first day or two. I recognized many bloggers I’ve interacted with online, but almost nobody recognized me. It’s a curse of being relatively anonymous. The best part was how the look would change from “and you are…” to “Oh, it’s you!” as I introduced myself or my nametag was read. And then there were hugs. Lots of hugs and handshakes turned “bro hugs.”

In addition, there was:

 

One-on-one mentoring with Joseph Hogue of My Work From Home Money and several other sites, learning some advanced search engine optimization.

 

The beeramid at Draft (Thank you, Mr. WoW!) somewhere between the hotel lobby and the Our Next Life after-party.  I got to the massive 35th floor suite after that and realized WoW, it really is waaaay past my bedtime.

 

Rapper Dee-1 crowdsurfing to Sallie Mae Back.

 

Hearing “I’ve met soooo many people from Minnesota.” The North Star state was well represented.

 

Being included in a potential “mastermind” group with some heavy hitters, like the guy who started FinCon.

 

Ryan Inman of Physician Wealth Services telling me how many people saw “Physician” on his name tag and mistakenly assumed he was me.

 

Sitting down with new friends long enough to get beyond small talk and tell stories. I enjoyed, breakfast, apps, brunch and lunch with people I’d been hoping to hang out with like The Happy Philosopher, Passive Income MD, Coach Carson, Nathan Barry of ConvertKit, my Swedish friend Karl of KINFO, Jonathan and Brad of ChooseFI, JD Roth, the WoWs, Mrs. Adventure Rich, and more.

 

Ally cookies. Vanguard did a great job with theirs, too.

 

Ally cookies

mmm… ally cookies

 

Did I mention the costume party? Michael from Uncommon Dream pulled off a mean Wolverine, Cat Alford was Miss FinCon, and I realized I still knew every explicit lyric to DMX’s Up in Here. Good times.

 

Thanking David Bach for the copy of Automatic Millionaire while giving him a gift of my own, a Physician on FIRE logo can koozie. Also, giving them to a couple hundred others and leaving them near the cans of complimentary soda. #marketing

 

pof koozies

PoF swag

 

Recording a podcast with microphones protruding from a Volkswagen Bug. The Mad Fientist, Mr. & Mrs. 1500 and I had a great talk and a few good laughs.

 

Putting faces to the names of anonymous bloggers and heights to the bodies of bloggers whose faces I recognized. Apparently, I’m not good at guessing a person’s height by the way his face looks. And who knew Jim Wang had such massive arms? I would not want to settle a disagreement by arm wrestling him. In fact, I would not want to disagree with him, period. I fear him.

 

Tweeting out the names of a half dozen people I had yet to meet but wanted to, and successfully connecting with all of them on the last day.

 

PoF Tweet

mission accomplished

 

Worst of FinCon17

 

I could probably name 100 more people that I met, conversed with briefly, but didn’t really get to know. There’s only so much time, and it was a very busy and often loud place.

 

I had been warned about losing your voice, but as a dog owner and father of two boys, my larynx is well accustomed to shouting, so I had no issues. That wasn’t so with everyone. Mr. 1500 almost had to reschedule our podcast, and poor Ms. Montana could only squeak and make hand gestures by the end of the meeting.

 

You can only be in one place at a time. The laws of physics can be a real hindrance at times.

 

Only one sort-of-craft beer in hotel ballroom evening events, a $9 Shiner Bock. Seriously?

 

FinCon17 Wrapup and FinCon18 Tips

 

I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the four-day extravaganza, and I’ve already purchased my ticket for FinCon18 in Orlando.




I haven’t said much about the breakout sessions themselves, but I did attend many of them and jotted down a few notes. I believe I picked up some tips that will only make this site better and more visible to more people.

There seem to be some sites that exist solely to tell a story and be rigorously authentic. Other sites are built for maximum profit. The two are not necessarily on opposite ends of a spectrum, but I think it’s tough to do both well at the same time.

I’m trying to do some of both, but at the end of the day, I’d rather be known for storytelling than profits, but I do have a charitable mission that fuels me, and Farnoosh Torabi did tell us we have an obligation to make more money. So I won’t apologize for attempting to do so.

Even if I didn’t learn a single thing or if I never implement any of the new ideas I have, FinCon will have been well worth it. The community aspect of blogging feels truly genuine now that the handshakes, hugs, and fist bumps have happened in real life.

 

What tips do I have for FinCon18 in Orlando?

 

If you have to yell to be heard, move somewhere else and spare your voice.

Bring snacks and beverages to the hotel. Have a car, a friend with a car, or learn the bus system if you have to. A collapsible cooler would be a smart option for your “personal item” to place under the seat in front of you.

Bring your kids! I expect we’ll be bringing our boys and I’m sure we won’t be the only ones. The pools look awesome, and I imagine you’re all familiar with the theme park options all around us in Orlando.

Attend the sessions that interest you. There is still ample time for networking and hand-shaking throughout the day and evening. [post-publication edit: the video pass will not cost extra as it appeared it would on the initial FinCon18 registration page]

Sign up early! The price goes up starting today or tomorrow, and continues to rise throughout the year. If you’re on the fence, pull the trigger and you won’t regret it.

I’ll see you there.

 


You’re still not using Personal Capital? Track all your accounts in one place like I do.



Check out these additional recaps with more stories and pictures from FinCon17:

 

Did you attend FinCon17 or the ASA Annual Meeting this year? If so, what was your favorite memory? If you’ve published a recap, let me know, and I’ll link to you here. Cheers!

 

103 comments

  • Sounds like a great time, PoF. I’ll probably have to check it out next year in Orlando.

  • Sounds like a grand time. I registered for 2018!

  • Sounds like you had a great time. Hey, all of those t-shirts are blue. Any pink ones? Lol

    Btw, where can I get those FinCon videos?

    Looking forward to reading your new and improved blog, even though I don’t know how you can improve what’s already great 😊.

    • I didn’t see pink, but there were green Femini$t shirts and The Happy Philosopher was rocking a pretty seafoam shirt from ChooseFI.

      Check the FinCon site to see if you can order the $99 virtual pass. Videos will be available in about a month.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • So glad I got to meet you in Boston, PoF, and FinCon sounded like tons of fun (those shirts!!). I’m definitely signing up for Orlando. East Coast and warm!! Works for me!! Thanks for the recap. I could *almost* picture it in my mind!!

  • Nice write up, PoF.
    Congrats on the nominations too. That is an amazing accomplishment – especially for the short time you have been blogging.
    Sounds like the Press Box Grill served up an awesome time. Wish I could have been there 🙁
    I should have known ordering the Veggie Burger and water would get me kicked off the list from a Texas bar!

    • I fixed it! I’ve added you back in, although if I had known you ordered a veggie burger, I might have thought twice. 😉

      Glad to have met you there, and at the conference. We rocked out to Dee-1 together. How could I forget that?!?

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • Wow thanks for the great summary! I have been reading blog posts about FinCon17 and have been trying to picture in my head what it was like hehe.

    It’s great that you took our wife with you! Whenever I go on a business trip, the first question my husband will ask me is whether he can come. But for various reasons, he hasn’t been able to join me. If I go to FinCon next time, I’ll definitely try to take him with me though 😀

    • It would not have been possible without family to watch our boys while we were away. Thank you, mom-in-law! With Orlando being a great family destination, I see no reason to leave our boys behind.

      Best.
      -PoF

  • Great write up and all your tweeting helped encourage me to buy my ticket for next year! I’m sure I won’t be disappointed.

  • Ha – they’re normal arms! (seriously, I’m not being false modest, they’re normal)

    I appreciated the koozie and it was fun meeting you in person too. It’s funny to hear you say that Fincon is “small” at like 1700 attendees but it’s all relative. What is nice about it is how we’re all vaguely internet familiar with one another in some way, which makes those massive meetups really fun to meet in person.

    It’s especially fun when you meet someone anonymous and have no expectations. You met them! 🙂

    • If those are normal arms, I’ve got toothpicks, and I don’t want to feel like I’ve got toothpicks!

      I’m glad our paths crossed, and I hope to have a bit more time to chat the next time around. See you in Orlando, if not before.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • Sounds like a blast. It would be fun and somewhat surreal to meet all the faces, some of which I’ve never seen, behind the great blogs of the PF world.

    I’m definitely an introvert and have more than a hint of social anxiety, so the thought of mingling with 1700 other attendees is intimidating, to say the least. I know that’s what alcohol is for, but what will I do in the mornings?

    • It was fun all around, and I think many of us have our introvert tendencies, but it’s pretty easy to shed that cloak among this crowd.

      In the morning… Irish coffee? Or just be yourself.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • I was one of those people who got to say hi for about 20 seconds before a talk on SEO. Smart move using your anesthesiologist bag to stand out.

    I can see how 1700 people seems intimate in comparison to your other conference. The first FinCon had about 100. That was intimate.

    The hidden DART was so frustrating. The only thing equally frustrating was the hour ride after finally finding it.

    The $9 beer and wine were crazy for a personal finance.

    I’m with you on not watching the videos. I say I will, but then I don’t. I still like to have them around like a security blanket. Not sure if it’s worth $99 extra for next year. It makes the prices effectively 50% more to get the same thing as this year.

    • In the brief 20 seconds that we did meet, I was impressed by the fact that you’ve been at this for years. The first FinCon? That does sound “intimate,” but in a non-sensual way.

      There were a few frustrations, sure, but they were overshadowed by all the goodness. The anesthesia bag was a convenience — I had just picked it up earlier in the week (for free, of course) and it fit my laptop perfectly.
      I actually tried to have the logo facing my body so as not to stand out.

      See you in Orlando, and hopefully for more than a few seconds.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

      • I might have nitpicked on the negatives a little too much. It’s just that everything is so great, it’s almost impossible to write about those. I find it easier to mention the slight blemishes. I hope that didn’t give anyone a negative impression of the experience.

        I saw that you were in Boston before FinCon. I grew up 8 miles west in the ‘burbs, so anything “Boston” catches my attention. I’m happy you got some time to see the city. There are a few people pushing Boston for FinCon20 (we presume that FinCon19 will be on west coast after Orlando).

  • Looks like you had an absolute blast! Too bad the Gophs have been struggling… hopefully we can catch up before the end of the year! Cheers.

  • Yes, it was a great time. So awesome to meet you in person finally!

    I won’t be bringing my kids to Orlando (they are off on their own) but will bring my wife. We’ve seen the hotel and it looks AWESOME!!!!

    Looking forward to what we may cook up in the time between then and now… 😉

  • It was awesome to meet you and your wife!

    Haha- I had the same problem… a double take when people would see my badge and realize “Oh! So YOU are Mrs. Adventure Rich…” It took me forever to find you at the Expo (the woes of 2 anonymous bloggers…).

    Looking forward to Orlando already!

  • The Sheraton also sold $9 danishes. I bought one and nearly spit it out and put it back in the display case once I saw the receipt.

    It was great briefly meeting you! My husband was oddly excited about the PoF beer koozie. 🙂

    Also, who was the dude in the Olaf costume? He came up and hugged me during the party but I don’t think I actually knew him lol.

  • Thanks for the recap. It was great to meet you. See you again next year.

  • How I aspire to get to the heady heights of “anesthesia famous”! I’m laughing at that and imagining WCI’s hareem! Sounds like a really great time.
    Also good to connect with you in person in Boston. So I had a small taste of what it must be like to meet bloggers in the flesh.

  • Great advice “if you have to yell move to a quieter place and save your voice”. Mine was shot by Friday and Saturday morning was pretty gravelly. It didn’t disappear, but man, it’s still a bit off.

    It was awesome getting to meet you and looking forward to next year!

    I’m going to try and convince the wife and kids to come along next year, but we’ll see how the timing works out with school.

  • I laughed so hard reading this. So glad to know you’re intimately familiar with DMX’s Up in Here. Those are important life skills to have. So glad we met and I got to get one of your many hugs! Next time, we can hopefully chat more. I love your blog and am happy for your success!

  • So glad to finally put a face with the name. Your yellow jaw line is so much more pronounced in person ;).

    It was awesome to get to know you guys. And sorry about the Gophers, but you know how my night went… hence the Beeramid!

    BTW, what’s in those coozie’s? They multiply like gremlins.

    We will do this again, at the very least in Orlando. Hopefully, before…

    • Well, I hate to admit it, but the Gophers losing is par for the course. On a normal day, I’d have a sour mood the rest of the day, but there was too much fun stuff going on for me to be affected.

      What’s in the koozies? A secret ingredient… Love.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

      • I’m the same way… Saturday would normally have ruined the rest of my weekend. But too much fun to be had to allow that.

        Mmmmmm… I’m glad we have to your secret love portion to cover our beers! I will never look at them the same way again.

  • As a Dallas native, I’ve grown accustomed to navigating the airports and now quite like them both (DFW/DAL).

    I need a couple of those Koozies, so I’m looking forward to when swag.physicianonfire.com goes live!

  • What a recap! I am impressed that you went to bed before 12 so often. Not a chance for me. But I do think I left before you Saturday:)

    I enjoyed getting to chat over BBQ with you, Happy Philosopher, and Jonathan from Choose Fi.

    And I somehow made it back to Ecuador with a PoF koozie. Thank you for the swag. If you have a rush of subscribers from Cuenca, you will know the source:)

    • Great lunch indeed, too much awesome all in one place!

      Meeting everyone was well worth the price of admission, and best of all I got an awesome Choose FI tee-shirt which as PoF mentioned above was a very pretty (in a manly way) shade of light green.

    • Thanks, Coach!

      You were on a short list of people I was hoping to spend some time with. Glad we were able to make it happen, and we’re pretty dedicated to making it happen again in Cuenca, Ecuador next spring.

      I hope to see you there!
      -PoF

  • Great summary of an awesome event. It makes me feel bad for (prepares to duck rotten tomatoes) living in DFW and not attending, but there was no way I could pull off the nearly nonstop activity with kids to tuck in and soccer games to coach and stuff. I’ll need a pass to go out of town to drink deep from the FinCon well – hopefully Orlando!

    Re: Gophers – you are more than welcome to start supporting Notre Dame – we are a forgiving bunch for past transgressions 🙂

  • That was a fun time. Too fun since it’s Tuesday and I’m still tired… Oof.

  • It was a fantastic week and I really enjoy reading your thoughts, which give me a different perspective on the week 🙂

    Great meeting you PoF and thanks for the shout-out.

  • The koozies were brilliant. I somehow came home with three of them, so every time I give a guest a beer I will be asked what Physician on Fire is. It is a shame we didn’t really get to talk. It’s definitely tough in a crowd of 1700 people to get substantive discussions with everyone that you want to meet. Oh well…there’s always Orlando!

  • What a recap and busy week for you! I was so lucky to quickly meet you Milo Anderson 🙂 and got a cool Koozie!

    I’m very much like you in the sense of probably not going through all the videos after the conference. I had to sit in on the break outs to be able to really get the information.

    I’ll definitely be buying my FinCon18 tickets today before prices go up!

  • It was awesome to get a chance to meet you, PoF. I’ll attest that you and Mrs. PoF had one of the better costumes.

    $9 Shiner Bock was a definite rip-off – I can get a 6-pack of delicious New Glarus brews for the same price at home. Mad FIentist tipped us off to the frugal hack of heading down to the bar to get the Shiner Bock (or a Deep Ellum IPA) for $6 instead and bringing it upstairs.

    The trip was awesome but physically taxing – in my lightheaded low-blood-sugar state, I remember asking you whether you grew up in Minnesota shortly after we talked about the town you grew up in. Oops! Thankfully I got a sandwich after that and felt a bit better.

    Looking forward to seeing you again at FinCon next year or hopefully sometime between at one of the MN meetups!

    • Great to meet you too, Chris. We’ve got that anesthesia connection even if we’ve worked on opposite ends of the machine, so to speak. Plus, the MN connection, even if you’ve wandered over to the dark side (red side).

      After my freebie beverage, I headed downstairs to take advantage of that same exact “frugal hack” for the Deep Ellum. Then Mr. Wow showed up with a grocery bag full of more and better freebies — that was a clutch move.

      See you soon!
      -PoF

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  • Great finally meeting the anonymous Doctor in person, really enjoyed our short time together! I can’t imagine doing two conferences back-to-back, it’s amazing how those things suck every bit of energy in the tank. Wouldn’t trade it for the world, tho. Incredible thing. Working on my write up for next week – love your idea of blog chaining the posts together, will attempt the same on mine!

    • It was a whirlwind, and I feel like I’m still catching up after activities all day and most evenings. I think the most rest I got all week was at the laundromat my last evening in Boston. Nothing to do but wait for the laundry. But still, I wrote most of a blog post while waiting.

      Great to meet you too, and I hope to see you again soon!
      -PoF

  • I felt so special when they kept coming up to me and said how much they loved my blog. The first few times I had to double check my name tag, but eventually I knew I had to correct people before they were too far into their “OMG I love your blog” moments.

    Great meeting you and thanks for letting me feel like a rockstar 🙂

  • Why don’t I have a Retirement Manifesto t-shirt, Fritz?!? I’m pouting here!

  • Thanks for the Rockstar advice about going to Fincon as a way to grow your audience. Hope to see you in Orlando next year, Doc. I’ll probably drive there from Philadelphia, like I always do.

  • So I totally have a confession, by Thursday we had already met a bunch of people on the “hope to meet list” except for you. We actually played a fun little game of trying to pick you out of the crowd. Is that him? Nope… Maybe that guy? Wrong again. Well, Mr. Wow totally won and spotted you first.

    So glad we got to hang out with you and Mrs. PoF, you two are simply awesome human beings.

    I also immensely enjoyed that, like me, you weren’t ok with the mediocre Shiner Bock beer during the costume party, the Deep Ellum stuff was so much better.

    • The anonymous bloggers are so much tougher to find in a crowd than those whose faces adorn their homepages.

      I know from Mr. 1500’s e-mails that you guys would be at the “small gathering” Thursday night, so I wasn’t too worried I would miss you.

      It was great to talk with you guys, particularly about the mission trips you’ve taken and lined up — perhaps we’ll get to join you at some point.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • It was awesome meeting you too! I felt a bit like The Little Mermaid. I had so much to say, and NO voice at all. One lady, after spending 3 hours with me, actually thought I was a mute. She was so inspired that I had “found” my voice in blogging. And then disappointed…

    • For what it’s worth, I enjoyed both our two-way conversations in the grand hall and the one-way conversation Saturday evening.

      I think you have found your voice in blogging. The fact that you have working vocal cords once again doesn’t change that.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

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  • Awesome (and hilarious) recap, PoF! This was definitely a great time for all attendees. I know because I checked with every person that attended. 😉

    If we focus on the drinking part for a minute…
    1) Thanks for the koozy!
    2) Yes, $9 for a Shiner Bock was one of the stupidest things I’ve ever seen… or paid for.
    3) I like the idea of bringing a cooler for next year’s event – you’re definitely one of them thinkers!!

    Great to meet you and see you next year!

    — Jim

    • Thank you, Jim.

      I enjoyed reading that your daughter hated your hair, and your wife kind of liked it. The opposite of what you expected, and definitely the opposite of what would happen in my household!

      Great to meet you as well, and I’m looking forward to Orlando already.

      Best,
      -PoF

  • I feel like the little rascal who had to practice violin lessons while all the other fellas played football outside his window.

    I hope you are getting commission, PoF, as I’m planning to attend FI summer camp next year!

    -CD

  • Great write up. I’ll second the point about Jim’s arms. Big and sexy. Sorry I didn’t get to meet you! Too many people and too little time….

    • Thank you, Joe!

      I thoroughly enjoyed the witty banter between you, Steve, and the many guests on stage for the Big Idea and Keynote speeches.

      We did shake hands briefly when I took a stack of papers to hand out in that glass cage of emotion known as the Innovations stage. But I’ll make an attempt at a more formal introduction in Orlando.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

  • GYM

    This was a great read, thank you! I felt like I was there 🙂 interesting about the different spectrum of “solely make money” vs “story telling” and how it’s hard to do both. I guess the commonality of both of these is that they both intend to help the reader, otherwise the reader wouldn’t be stopping by the site in the first place.

    • Yeah, I think monetization muddies the waters a bit, but “no margin, no mission.”

      I don’t think it’s impossible to do both well at the same time, but it’s not easy. The two don’t always mesh very naturally. There’s obviously a difference between writing for SEO keywords and writing “from the heart.”

      Best,
      -PoF

  • I swear I started a comment on this the other day… But wow, what a great time – and what a fun write-up! I am getting on mine by this weekend. It’s been crazy getting back and dealing with things from being gone for those couple of days! Well worth every minute (OK – except for the $9 beer we bought too!) It was great meeting you and your wife! You guys looked awesome Saturday night. Looking forward to seeing everyone next year – and we should definitely look into childcare for those of you with kids! I have a 22-year old daughter who might like a couple days away from college to hang out with some kiddo’s!

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  • Great recap! It was amazing how many people were at the first timer orientation which made me feel right at home as a newbie! So much actionable content at this convention! I don’t know how you pulled off two conventions back to back as I was exhausted by the end of FinCon myself! Sorry we didn’t really get much of a chance to chat, but it was cool seeing you in some of the sessions and so many others! Hopefully we’ll all be better prepared next year!

    • Agreed, Steven.

      As a fellow first-time, it took a few days to get a feel for what to do and where to be. I’ll be better able to take full advantage of all the conference has to offer the next time around.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

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  • Great FinCon write-up and congrats on the nominations! I’m impressed you were able to make it to the after parties. We basically passed out from all the booze they had at the Ally party and the closing party. *sigh*. This millennial feels old.

    One of your fans at Chautauqua told me they wanted to meet you at FinCon but they ran out of vacation days for the year, so I sent them a picture of us (Sorry we didn’t get to chat longer. Fincon is a mad house!) and they got a big kick out of it!

    I love how you’re doing a rounding up of all the FinCon writeups. I did a min-recap here: https://www.millennial-revolution.com/freedom/fincon-madness/

    Keep doing your awesome work of giving back the community! You’ve got fans everywhere 🙂

    • Thanks! I’m happy I had a chance to meet you and Bryce, and it was cool to hear about my readers you met in Ecuador.

      I’ve added your post to the list of recaps, and I hope you’ll be writing another one in another 11 months or so after FinCon18 in Orlando.

      Cheers!
      -PoF

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  • Awesome recap! Thanks for being there and making the most of it. See you soon, my man!

  • Hello! I thoroughly enjoyed reading your write up of Fincon. It reminded me of just how much we all managed to cram into those few days.

    I managed to get to quite a lot of the sessions instead of hanging out in the corridors. I got chatting to some great people while waiting for talks to start, plus I learnt lots from the panel discussions.

    If you’re still updating your list of Fincon posts, I wrote up the top 5 things I learned from Fincon in this post http://inspiringlifedesign.com/posts/Five-Biggest-Lessons-from-Fincon17.html

    Here’s looking forward to Orlando ‘18!

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  • Wow! I’m honored to have my recap included in your listing.

    FinCon was awesome, but being a first time attendee, I have nothing to compare it to.

    Best thing? People.

    I got to meet a number of folks that I’ve been following and communicating with. I also met a TON of new folks and it was a blast to hear their stories and talk about our passion.

    I’m sure some thought that I was stalking them, as we seemed to bump into each other, right and left.

    Oh well, they all went home safe, so they know that I’m not some deranged blogger. 🙂

    I’ve already got my pass for 2018. Bought it right on site. I’ve never been to Florida, so it’s going to be a double dose for me.

    Thanks again for the share and all your good stuff.

    All the best from Texas!

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