Does Price Determine Value?

In an economy where penny pinching is finally in vogue, ticket price can cause sticker shock! Maybe you have heard that a high-end conference will bring out "the cream of the crop?" To some extent, I agree. But I also believe a conference can cultivate a whole new crop! Let's look at both sides of that coin.

1) A high-priced conference, workshop or retreat will need a big step of faith to attend. It will bring out people who are serious about their desire to grow as individuals, business people or leaders. They'll need to attend in order to create their craft, to network or to confirm their calling.

*the organizers have a budget to work with and are able to bring in experts who have studied and bring new insight to their field.

When a price tag is high, it means...

*you will network with others who have experienced success.

*the location will be conducive to a getaway.

*it will offer a large number of experts and offer lots of opportunities through workshops and hands-on programs.

*it will weed out people who are not serious about their growth.

I have been drooling over a premier writers' conference in New Mexico for years. But the cost of travelling across the country, coupled with the cost of the event itself has stopped me in my tracks. This year, scholarships are being offered, and that changes everything! As I have reevaluated that desire to attend, it still beacons me with the pull of connecting with successful people in the industry.

*that program can stand the test of time. It will continue to bring people in, regardless of the economy because it's a reputation for excellence.

2) A high-price can exclude people who need that extra nudge. Some people don't read past the cost. It becomes prohibitive in their thinking and can stall the best intentions. All budding artists and entrepreneurs need to start somewhere. Networking at a conference or retreat center can give them the confidence to take a step in the right direction, as they learn from the stories of others.

A low-priced conference may not bring people in from all over the country, but it could provide the environment where a mentoring relationship may be birthed. Both sides benefit from the relationship as questions are tackled and clarified. Both sides gain insight in to the technique and grow from the banter. We have all been on the receiving finish of somebody else's wisdom; mentoring somebody who is beginning out gives us the opportunity to "pay it forward" to another.

Over the years, I have sought alternatives to large writers' conferences, and have benefitted from attending a variety of options. I found a great conference at Sandy Cove, Maryland, and attended once. I went to workshops at our local college and libraries. And I have interacted with seminars online. They helped me to clarify my calling and to pursue excellence in that cause.

In planning retreats for the women of our church, they've sought ways to keep cost to a maximum, so that everyone would be able to attend. You seldom know where seed will be planted that will sprout in to a fruitful life!

Does price decide value? The point of a conference is to motivate and encourage those who participate. If action happens because of that connection, then it will have achieved its purpose!

Sally Ferguson is always on the lookout for a great conference! Find out more about her adventures at her blog at Sign up for more ariticles like these at

By Sally Ferguson

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2 comments to “Does Price Determine Value?”
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ROSSI said...

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