How to Get the Most Out of Elite Retreat

Elite RetreatI’ve written about Elite Retreat many times because it changed my life so dramatically.  I went from earning a decent full-time salary to having a very significant online business that I later sold for more money than I would have ever imagined.

The next ER starts tomorrow, and first-time attendee Max Lishansky has asked me how he can have the same results in his business.  I know it’s too late to sign-up if you haven’t already, but it’s not too early to be planning for the next one.  I think this advice from several different ER alums might have you doing just that.

My Advice

Because everyone signs confidentiality agreements at the very beginning, the things people share at ER are things you’d never learn anywhere else.  And because of the number of attendees and speakers, you’ll learn more than you could ever possibly put into practice.  The key is to absorb as much as you can.  Take copious notes.  Ask questions to learn more.  And be sure to give as freely as you take — the more open you are with others, the more they’ll share with you.

There is so much information delivered at ER that you’re almost guaranteed to learn something that will dramatically impact your business — you just don’t know where it’s going to come from.  My business was revolutionized in just a few minutes of one-on-one time with Aaron Wall, but yours could be something completely different.

Learn as much as you can while you’re there.  You can sleep when you get home :)

David Wilson, Social Media Optimization

I have attended four ER’s and I got the most out of the last one because I went into ER with a plan. Before I left I put together a list of the speakers that I wanted to have 1-on-1’s with and what questions I wanted to ask them. I also drew up a list of questions that I wanted to ask other participants and speakers.

Having this plan beforehand meant that not only did I get my questions answered, but that I left ER with a whole list of action items that I am still implementing 12 months later.

Brandon Laughridge, Growth Partner

My advice to a first time Elite Retreat attendee is to pursue any potential relationship whether it seems like you can initially benefit or not.  Take time to follow up with people after the event and if you’re compatible become friends.  I’ve been on a few trips to visit people I met at Elite Retreat and seen tons of others at various conferences.  Usually I don’t have a business agenda but somehow it’s resulted in more $ in my pocket over the past year.

I was able to forge a relationship with the right people to finance the acquisition of a small company — mostly due to the credibility of my contacts from the Elite Retreat.  Since then another attendee, my partner, and I also cofounded another company together despite originally have somewhat different positions in the “make money online” world.  There’s lots of big opportunities that come out of these events so keep your mind open and talk to everyone!

Chris Guthrie, Make Money on the Internet

Try and meet everyone while you’re there and spend a solid chunk of time getting to know more about them and their business. The group is small so you should be able to build meaningful relationships while at the event instead of the typical business card handout approach at much larger events. The people I met ultimately lead me to selling my first website through an investment banker which was a huge success.

Bari Lee, Customized Marketing

Read and reread all the info you can on the speakers including their personal sites.  You will be able to request one on ones with a few of the leaders, and you want to be sure to maximize your return in this area.  Think about who can give you the most valuable advice for where you are at this point in your career, or with a problem that you have.  Think long and hard about what you want to ask.  You will have limited time.  Be prepared with saved links to show the leader and/or written questions.

Don’t be shy!  The connections that you make with participants and leaders will be important to you in the future!

Conclusion

I think the one thing I should have mentioned is the one piece of advice that Bari, Chris and Brandon all had in common: Relationships.  You’ll find that being an ER alumni alone is worth the price of admission.  We still help each other out years later, and Jeremy goes overboard to provide real value that continues long after everyone goes home.  The things you learn are huge, but you’ll miss out terribly if you don’t spend time getting to know the other people there.