John O'Connor
John O’Connor

I am regularly asked which industry events are the “must attends.” As so often is the case, there is no one best answer.

Now depending on your proverbial house of worship as a senior living operator, you should definitely consider the Argentum (formerly ALFA) show in May, or the AHCA/NCAL convention in October. If you happen to be a nonprofit, the LeadingAge convention in November is the biggest of them all.

Those are all excellent events. But any senior living operator who wants to borrow money, understand the big picture and get the latest scuttlebutt should be in Dallas right now. That’s because NIC’s Spring Investment Forum is under way — and runs through Friday.

Several things make NIC events unique. Perhaps most notably, the real action tends to take place behind the scenes. Should you accidentally wander into one of the many suites being rented out, you might interrupt negotiations for a bridge loan — or a billion-dollar buyout.

And the stuff that’s publicly on display is pretty good, too. Today for example, Dan Mendelson of Avalere Health is serving up an insider’s perspective on the factors reshaping seniors housing and care. That alone is going to be a very worthwhile presentation.

A nice selection of additional sessions will encompass virtually every aspect of senior living today, from finding revenue to harnessing technology.

If you missed out, that truly is unfortunate. The good news is that NIC’s Fall Conference will be held Sept. 14 to 16 in Washington.

But keep in mind that space is limited. I realize that it sounds a bit like I am shilling for this show. Truth be told, I do know Bob Kramer quite well.

But my recommendation here is based on something else: attending industry events for more than two decades. Pound for pound, you are simply not going to find a better show.

John O’Connor is editorial director of McKnight’s Senior Living. Email him at [email protected].