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From Attendee to Speaker: Adrian Gates’ WFX Experience

One attendee recently went from sitting in the audience to sharing his knowledge from the stage at WFX Conference & Expo.

Thinking about attending this year’s WFX Conference & Expo? You never know what your WFX journey may entail. You could meet someone from another church who’s just successfully overcome the same issue you’re dealing with today.

You might find a vendor whose product is the perfect fit for your church.

Or, perhaps you’ll end up becoming a speaker in the coming years.

One attendee recently went from sitting in the audience to sharing his knowledge from the stage. Adrian Gates is the media director for Crossroads Community Church in Fitchburg, MA. He has served in many capacities, including music producer, webmaster, videographer, consultant, social media “expert,” sound guy, lighting guy, stagehand, and roadie. His clients include some of the largest tech around, churches in New England looking to modernize, and other dedicated weekend warriors.

Adrian started attending the WFX Conference in 2016 and is now a regular speaker at WFX. We spoke with him about this experience going from attendee to speaker and how he has been impacted by his experiences at the WFX Conference & Expo.

WFX: How did attending WFX help you in your role as Media Director for your church?

Adrian: Attending the conference helped me develop an attitude of how to network at an event. I’d networked within my local church community, but it hadn’t occurred to me that this was something we could do on a broader scale. It’s been incredibly helpful to know there are folks who I've met through WFX that are happy to take my call and offer their expertise.

WFX: What led to you speaking at WFX in 2017?

Adrian: I received an email asking for presentation submissions and submitted my idea for a topic, which was how we grew our tech team as the church grew in size. Our church started off with a small congregation and tech team. Twelve years later we have about 600 people in attendance, with a 30-person crew and now have 50 people on the tech team.

WFX: How has speaking at WFX impact you?

Adrian: While I don’t consider myself an expert, I enjoyed sharing what I’ve learned and hearing from the audience as they offered their ideas. Another positive outcome was that we started a networking group in New England. It’s helpful to get in the same room with people who deal with similar issues.

WFX: How has your involvement with WFX impacted your church, Crossroads?

Adrian: Speaking at WFX and writing for Worship Tech Director has helped clarify my thought process. For example, at this year’s conference, I’m speaking about lighting design. We were starting to have that conversation here about how we’re putting together our service. It’s gotten me to look at how other churches do it and trying to understand why they do it that way and how that aligns with the mission of their church.

 WFX: What tips would you give to someone attending WFX?

 Adrian: Try not to spend too much time with the people you came with. Talk with presenters, other church leaders around a vendor table, etc. Get to know other attendees and share contact information. What’s impacted me most were conversations I had with people after one of my presentations.

Don’t miss Adrian’s sessions at this year’s WFX Conference & Expo on November 13-15 in Orlando, Florida. Join him for “How Lighting Design Communicates Church Culture” and “Post-Apocalyptic Facebook.”

Register today using one of these promo codes: 

* GRP3BV – Buy 3 – Get One (2) Day Conference pass free, + 20% discount on each paid registration

* PSTR2BV – Buy 2 – Get Senior Pastor for free, + 20% discount on each paid registration

* WFXCNF20 – 20% discount on individual registrations

TAGS: Leadership
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