E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

From the blog

What Face to Face Conferences Were Ever Meant to Be – Just Special

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If you would remember, a few days ago I created a weblog entry over here mentioning how by the end of May, about a month from now, actually, I will be speaking at IBM’s 2007 Professional Technical Leadership Exchange around the subject of social computing, communities and the adoption of some of IBM‘s top social software tools within the enterprise. While I am in the final process of finishing off the presentation, I thought I would share over here a particular quote that I thought was just wonderful and which clearly explains why I am really excited to be able to make it to the event later in May.

That particular quote comes from one of the various different weblog entries that have been shared both inside and outside of the firewall from IBM‘s TLE Europe sister event for Americas and Asia Pacific: The TLE in Anaheim and which took place last week already. 4.000 of IBM’s best technical leaders jamming away certainly puts things into perspective as to what I am looking forward to when I head to Paris, where another 3.000 people are expected to be there for a few days.

So, like I have just mentioned, over the course of last week I have actually been avidly following the different weblog entries that people have been putting together and sharing across about what they thought about the TLE event in Anaheim and of the several dozens of them there was one particular entry, which actually comes from a good friend and fellow weblogger who has been weblogging for over seven years and who, perhaps, is one of the main guilty parties that got me started with blogging about 5 years ago!, that I thought would be really worth while sharing across.

His name is David Singer and the actual weblog article is this one: 24 amazing hours. It is a must-read for anyone who would want to find out why, despite all of the technology and tools available to us all out there, it is still very much worth while attending live face to face conference events as something that can be, if anything, special.

Here is the quote from that particular post that makes all the travel, all the hassle with the bookings, the expenses, and whatever else, very much worth while and why I am seriously looking forward not only to IBM’s TLE event in Paris by end of May, but also the APQC KM & Innovation event in Houston in just a couple of weeks from now:

"[…] There were many good technical sessions at the TLE; I suspect most people concentrated on those sessions, because they were immediately job-relevant. Although I did attend one or two such sessions (and even got some job-relevant information on structuring presentations at one of them), I don’t think they’re the real value of a conference like TLE, any more than the programming courses I took at RPI were the real value of my education there. Technical skills are short-lived; what’s important is learning how to learn, and how to make the world a better place. This TLE offered much in those areas, and I’m very glad I was able to take advantage."

Yes, indeed, *that* is what live face to face conference events are all about and whoever says otherwise should just read David’s entire article to see if their thoughts would still stand as is after having gone through it, because I bet they wouldn’t. You can probably tell why I just can’t wait for those events to kick off, right? Yes, indeed, one single word to explain it all: special.

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