We know, we know! \u00a0You and your team are so busy working IN your business that you find it hard to carve out time to work ON your business. \u00a0But if you want to avoid getting into a rut, you have to lift up your head sometime, meet new people who can open up opportunities, and grow your skills (and your team's skills). \u00a0Small business events are perfect opportunities to step back and focus on the big picture. \u00a0Here is our hand-picked list of conferences, seminars and events. Sign up for one today! * * * * * Startup Weekend Multiple Cities and Dates 2012 - see website for full list Startup Weekends are 54-hour events designed to provide superior experiential education for technical and non-technical entrepreneurs. Beginning with Friday night pitches and continuing through brainstorming, business plan development, and basic prototype creation, Startup Weekends culminate in Sunday night demos and presentations. Participants create working startups during the event and are able to collaborate with like-minded individuals outside of their daily networks. All teams hear talks by industry leaders and receive valuable feedback from local entrepreneurials. The weekend is centered around action, innovation, and education. Whether you are looking for feedback on a idea, a co-founder, specific skill sets, or a team to help you execute, Startup Weekends are the perfect environment in which to test your idea and take the first steps towards launching your own startup. Infusionsoft Small Business Success Tour September 13 - Chicago September 28 - Los Angeles October 5 - Boston This series features a full day of strategies, tips and marketing best practices from the experts at Infusionsoft. You'll receive hands-on instructions on how to develop a highly effective sales and marketing plan you can start implementing right away. You'll learn to: Drive higher customer referral traffic tomorrow Calculate and optimize the lifetime value of your customers Create a constant flow of new customers who are ready to buy Build a healthy and responsive database Get the right message, to the right person, at the right time MacTech Boot Camp September 5 - Minneapolis, MN December 5 - Miami, FL MacTech Boot Camp is a one day event for those that support the home user, and small business market held around the country. MacTech Boot Camp is a single-track, hotel based seminar that is specifically geared to serve the needs of consultants and techs wanting to serve their base better. This event is geared toward those that already support the home and SMB communities, or that want to become a consultant supporting these areas. TechSpeak for Entrepreneurs September 20-21, 2012, New York City For women entrepreneurs, tech knowledge is freedom...freedom from fear, freedom to pursue their dreams of venturing out on their own. No longer will they be out of the loop from their tech team, no longer will they be held hostage by their consultants who "know more". At TechSpeak for Entrepreneurs, you will learn: How to plan, in detail, your entire project so that your tech team will know exactly what to do. How to hire the right tech people. How to manage the project and catch mistakes early How to deliver you project on time and on budget Early bird pricing expires July 30th. MarketingProfs B2B Forum 2012 October 3-5, 2012, Boston B2B Forum isn't just another event. It's the event for B2B marketers who don't just follow yesterday's best practices; they create the next practices needed to move their businesses\u2014and industries\u2014forward. Five programming tracks covering the modern marketing mix: lead gen, content, social media, mobile, and marketing essentials. Dozens of smart sessions by professionals on the pulse of marketing trends and growth. Inc. 500 | 5000 October 3-5, 2012, Phoenix, AZ Inc. 500|5000 Conference & Awards Ceremony is the must-attend event for the nation\u2019s leading entrepreneurs. Join your colleagues and peers for three days of unparalleled networking and learning from the leaders of America\u2019s fastest-growing companies. This year's speakers include Captain Mark Kelly, Commander of the Space Shuttle Endeavour's final mission, Guy Kawasaki, Founding Partner of Garage Technology Ventures, and Marie Tillman, Founder of the Pat Tillman Foundation. Women's Business Conference 2012 October 4-5, 2012, Louisville, KY This year\u2019s theme celebrates the entrepreneurial, innovative and adventurous spirit of women business owners. They are starting businesses at record rates and running these businesses on their own terms. They refuse to sit idle, waiting and watching. They have confidence and power to shake things up, take smart risks and do things differently to move forward. They are impacting positive change at every turn, speaking out on issues of public policy, lightening their environmental footprint and creating jobs that fuel the economy. They are part of something much greater than themselves\u2014a grassroots movement of women business owners and their community of supporters all dedicated to helping one another grow, thrive, give back and leave a legacy. Affiliate Management Days October 9-10, 2012, Ft. Lauderdale, FL Affiliate Management Days\u00a0is the world\u2019s first and only professional forum devoted to affiliate management. This conference is designed for those who offer an affiliate program or are considering offering an affiliate channel. \u00a0AM Days offers you valuable insight into how other online retailers are successfully implementing and managing their affiliate programs. \u00a0If you want your affiliate channel to be more successful and profitable, this is the conference for you. \u00a0Learn with world experts! The New York Enterprise Report 2012 Small Business Awards October 10, 2012, New York City The New York Enterprise Report Small Business Awards is the annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of the 500,000+ small businesses throughout the tri-state area. Now in its 7th year, the Awards gala attracts more than 400 business owners and executives and is often referred to as \u201cthe networking event of the year.\u201d Don\u2019t miss the chance to do business with the \u201cwho\u2019s who\u201d of the New York small business community. Pubcon Vegas 2012 October 15-18, 2012 Supported by the industry's leading businesses, exhibitors and sponsors involved in social media, Internet marketing, search engines, and online advertising, Pubcon Las Vegas 2012 will offer a week-long look at the future of technology presented by over 200 of the world's best speakers in more than 100 bold cutting-edge sessions. New York Business XPO and Conference October 17, 2012, New York City The New York Business XPO and Conference is New York's #1 expo and conference for small and mid-size businesses. \u00a0Over 10,000 people attend the show floor. \u00a0Includes presidents, CEOs and top executives of privately held firms entering the next phase of growth. \u00a0Includes educational seminars and workshops throughout the day, featuring the top small-business speakers from around the country.\u00a0October 17, 2012 at the Javits Convention Center. \u00a0Register now. Small Business Influencer Awards Gala October 17, 2012, New York City The Small Business Influencer Awards will honor the Top 100 small business influencer champions at a festive Awards Gala on the evening of October 17, 2012 at the Javits Convention Center. Last year's event had a capacity crowd at a smaller venue. This year it will be bigger than ever -- with the Awards Gala as the evening event at the New York Business XPO and Conference. \u00a0One ticket gets you into both! \u00a0More details. \u00a0Don't miss this exciting event!\u00a0\u00a0Tickets are just $34 if you use our discount code: \u00a0INFLUENCER. \u00a0Register now! Small Business Expo November 8, 2012, Los Angeles Small Business Expo is a full day networking event, trade show & conference of the year for business owners, C-Level Executives & company decision-makers. Network with other business professionals & check out the exciting exhibitor hall Establish new contacts and reconnect with old ones. Further your education by attending workshops & seminars. Learn about new products and services that will help your business grow. Interact with the movers and shakers of your industry. Discover new and innovative technologies. Global Entrepreneurship Week November 12-18, 2012, 20+ Countries Global Entrepreneurship Week is the world\u2019s largest celebration of the innovators and job creators who launch startups that bring ideas to life, drive economic growth and expand human welfare. During one week each November, GEW inspires people everywhere through local, national and global activities designed to help them explore their potential as self-starters and innovators. These activities, from large-scale competitions and events to intimate networking gatherings, connect participants to potential collaborators, mentors and even investors\u2014introducing them to new possibilities and exciting opportunities. New Media Expo January 6-8, 2013, Las Vegas NMX, formerly Blog World & New Media Expo, is the first and only industry-wide conference, tradeshow and media event dedicated to providing valuable content for Bloggers, Podcasters and Web TV producers. Pre-register now and receive Super Early Bird rates. Affiliate Summit West 2013 January 13-15, 2013, Las Vegas This three day conference includes an exhibit hall with affiliate merchants, vendors, and networks, as well as multiple tracks of educational sessions covering the latest trends and information from affiliate marketing experts. To find more small business events, contests and awards, visit the Small Business Events Calendar. If you are putting on a small business event or contest, and want to get the word out, please submit it through our Events & Contests Submission Form (it's free). Only events of interest to small business people, freelancers and entrepreneurs will be included. Brought to you as a community service by Small Business Trends and Smallbiztechnology.com.