I wanted to wait until I received some pictures, but I won't. I'm a little bit too excited about the outcome .
Thursday night was the big evening. We (Luc, Ludo, Kurt, Patrick, Rodrigue and me) had put a lot of work in it. We had been taking care of:
We were quite proud to have 250 people who registered. 250 people! In Belgium, that's a big piece of the entire Dynamics channel.
We were a little bit unlucky about the traffice that evening. A huge traffic jam caused people to arrive a bit late. The only thing we did about that was to postphone the first session with 15 minutes.
In total, we had more than 200 attendees. I think we can speak of a big success. All sessions went quite well. Mine was together with Ludo. We didn't prepare a lot, but we were glad how it went .
After all sessions, there was the afterparty. And what a party it was. We had a band (thanks Roel and the guys!) and afterwards DJ Tom Costers. All I can say is that we had a blast ... . A lot of people dancing and enjoying themselves. It was great! Even Naveen and Claus were dancing. Isn't this wat the community is all about? Coming to gether, sharing info, sharing experiences and "have more fun"? That's definitely something we did! .
Through this way, I would just like to thank everyone that makes this possible. The BDC board, the attendees, the sponsors, the volunteers, ... Everyone! In the very near future, you will be able to download foto's, slides, ... from www.dynamicscom.be . Be sure to check it out!
Now, up to the next one .
I am writing the "final thoughts"-posts because it seems interesting for me to have somebody's general idea to conferences like this. They are not cheap, so you should be planning them as efficient as possible.
What did I expect from Directions EMEA? Actually not very much. It was the first time in Europe for not that big of an audience: about 300 attendees. First time is always challenging, because you just don't know how the audience reacts, expects, ... .
When I was looking at the agenda, there were quite many ISV sessions, which I love since Directions US. ISV's have to pay for a session of 1 hour. This is a first "filtering" of only getting "serious" ISV's that you're going to listen to. This doesn't mean that solution is going to be "great", but it tells something about the dedication.
"Dedication" is another thing you just feel in a conference like Directions. And it destinguishes it from the rest... . The conference is organized BY NAV partners FOR NAV partners. The organizing partners are dedicated to the product , as are the attending partners. And that's something you could feel in the US, but also now at Directions EMEA.
I'm trying to "launch" a product myself (our "iFacto Integration Framework") and I definitely am convinced now ... that this is not easy! There were some executive sessions about "partnering" or "going abroad", so I have been attending these sessions as well. They were all educative and have put my feet back on the ground. Our product is mature and finished, but our marketing sure isn't. As we all know, the marketing around the product is equally important as the product itself. Anyway, still have some work there... .
To get the people in touch with our product, we choose to have an expo booth. This means: two evenings, during the reception, you have a table to show your product. So people could walk around with their beers from one booth to the other. We got some good contacts out of it. You know that every soul is a NAV partner, so everyone is interesting to talk to . It's actually an interesting concept. About everyone goes to the reception ... So about every goes to the expo .
And also, this directions I was asked to present my own session ... But this was covered in previous post. So, also this convention was worth going to ... at least for me .
Here are some pics:
Me, in my most "gay" hand-position ever on photo, explaining our IIF to Alain Krikilion.
From left to right: Meral Muhlbacher (SQLPerform), Hynek Muhlbacher (SQLPerform), me and Mark Brummel (Liberty Grove).
The MVP-Lunch. From left to right: Alain Krikilion, Luc Van Dyck, Michael Rosenorn, me and Jörg Stryk.
I hadn't put this on my blog yet, but people asked me to give a presentation about Hardware on Directions EMEA 2008. I never did something like this before, but I immediately accepted. And I must say, this impulsive decision has caused me quite some headaches and stress lately. Anyway, it's a challenge, it involves some work, but the satisfaction (if you do a good job, off course ) is great.
So, Thursday was the big day. After a month of intensive preparation, I was ready to give my presentation.
The title: "Hardware recommendations to make installations hum". Now, I'm really no hardware specialist, but I do (think I) know how to set up and configure the different hardware when it involves a NAV implementation. And it's just that what I talked about... .
In some way, I was quite surprised being so relaxed during the presentation. Actually, I was so releived that I could finally do it, after the hard work I had put into it (research, ppt, timing, scenario, pronounciation, ...). A positive experience .... Worth to do it again.
I want to take this opportunity as well to thank all people that stood by me during my preparation.
I'm not blogging this directions, so I'm not going to do that for my presentation either. Actually, Kriki did a good job on his blog. Thanks kriki. It's weird to be blogged yourself .If you're interested in the presentation, you can download it here.
It seems that I'm not going to blog this directions. It's a bit akward for me, being able to sit, not type, just easily follow the sessions... . Different, but nice.
Why aren't I blogging? Not because I don't want to, but because there are two bloggers present. Kriki is here as well. First time I meet him, and we definitely get along . We wanted both to follow the same sessions (we are both pretty technical), so we would be writing both the same. We agreed that he takes the honours (or should I say "duty") this time.
So definitely check out kirki's blog.
It has been a while. Not much has changed, just the SP1 is now officially released (but I already added the link ). Below, I added some other interesting links... .
Update 2 – NODBC
Update 2 – NODBC
Update 4 – NODBC
Update 1 and 4
Update 6, SQL
Other interesting links: