View from MIX from Mandalay Bay

Just got back from an amazing week at the SharePoint Conference 2012 in Las Vegas. Great sessions, great networking (with the people in mean), great social events and not so great swag.

On the way out someone asked me what could be done to improve the experience at the next conference.

This year two things comes to mind:

  • Presentation skills and wired networking for presentations
  • Use SharePoint to organize and deliver the conference

Presentation skills

Presentation skills are vital to deliver any message and especially when doing technical talks slides and demos have to be dead on. The presenter has to engage the audience and not just deliver a recital from the yellow pages. If the presenter is exited and energetic then the message usually comes across much clearer.

Techniques like knowing how to use magnifier and larger fonts in Visual Studio is just a prerequisite. Unfortunately I experienced several presenters that didn’t use these basic tools and settings which made it impossible to see what was presented on the screens.

Overall I would have to say that the level of presentation skill and talent was lower this year than before. So this is a must for the next conference.

This is a no-brainer for anyone delivering presentations anywhere. I never never go to a customer and rely on wireless connectivity. Wifi and 3/4G hotspots are just to flakey. Next time please make sure that presentations use wired networking so that demos doesn’t fail because of network congestion.

Use SharePoint to organize and deliver the conference

Not using SharePoint to deliver the conference and engage the attendees is simply a mind blower for me. How cool would it be to use SharePoint to collaborate on the sessions – see and try the demos for your self in real time. To get instant access to the code and slides. To interact with the other attendees using social and other features. Use Yammer to setup a private network for the conference – I could have done that in 2 minutes.

So next time – use SharePoint to organize and deliver the conference.