HBS Online’s annual Connext conference is just around the corner on Friday, May 7. Centered on the theme “Navigating the Digital Frontier,” the day-long virtual event will be full of opportunities for members of our Community to learn, exchange ideas, and network.

The event sold out in a matter of hours, and registration is now closed. If you weren’t able to secure a ticket, don’t worry—read on to find out how you can follow along.

Here’s what you can expect from Connext 2021.

What to Expect at Connext 2021

Virtual Format

Connext will be held virtually this year to ensure a safe day for all during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Your registration email contains a link to join the event. On May 7, you can log in starting at 8:30 a.m. EDT.

During this period, you can explore the event platform, curate your personal agenda, hop into a general networking table, check out the HBS Coop, try the photo booth, or simply settle in and wait for the opening remarks and keynote to begin.

Feel free to use the general chat function to let people know where you’re located, what courses you took, and what you’re most looking forward to.

Opening Remarks and Keynote

HBS Online Executive Director Patrick Mullane will kick the event off with a welcome message and then introduce Senior Associate Dean Debora Spar, who will deliver this year’s keynote.

Sessions with HBS Faculty

Tune in to a variety of sessions throughout the day featuring HBS faculty. During these, you can share thoughts with fellow attendees in the session chat and ask questions using the Q&A function. Sessions include:

Live Online Classroom Case Discussions

Programming for the day also includes two case discussions in the HBS Live Online Classroom (LOC) hosted by professors Nancy Koehn and Sunil Gupta.

Attendees have been randomly selected to participate in each case discussion and received emails with further information about how to join the LOC. All other Connext attendees can observe the sessions in real time on the event platform.

Networking Opportunities

Despite this year’s virtual format, Connext has no shortage of networking opportunities. During the designated networking hour (3:30–4:30 p.m. EDT), join virtual networking tables to connect with peers. Additionally, there are 15-minute breaks scheduled throughout the day that can be used as networking time.

Networking tables will be designated by Community Chapter and course. There will also be general networking tables available for the duration of the event.

When entering a networking table, attendees will have the option to join with video and audio to enable conversation and connect with fellow learners.

Closing Remarks & Announcements

To formally close the day, HBS Dean Srikant Datar will deliver closing remarks, and Debora Spar will make several important HBS Online announcements.

Additional Fun

In addition to faculty sessions, case discussions, and networking opportunities, we have a lot of fun planned.

Following the closing remarks and announcements, attendees are invited to watch a performance by cellist Tina Guo or attend a tasting presentation by wine and water sommelier Jessica Altieri, both former HBS Online participants.

Throughout the day, shop for HBS Online swag at the Coop, visit our social media wall and contribute by using the hashtag #HBSOnlineConnext, and document the day with our photo booth, complete with shots of the HBS campus to use as backgrounds.

Following Along

For those unable to join us at Connext, there are several ways to experience the action. The following sessions will be livestreamed on HBS Online’s Facebook and LinkedIn pages:

  • Opening remarks by HBS Online Executive Director Patrick Mullane and a keynote by Senior Associate Dean Debora Spar (9:00–10:15 a.m. EDT)
  • Live conversation with HBS Professors Rebecca Henderson and Forest Reinhardt (12:30–1:45 p.m. EDT)
  • Closing remarks by HBS Dean Srikant Datar and important announcements by Debora Spar (4:30–5:30 p.m. EDT)

Be sure to follow HBS Online on our social media channels to tune in to the livestreamed sessions, and follow the #HBSOnlineConnext hashtag to join the conversation.

The HBS Online team looks forward to welcoming you to Connext 2021!

To learn more about Connext, explore our frequently asked questions, along with a recap of 2019’s conference and one attendee’s meaningful takeaways.