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David Barrett’s Blog: The Show is Over!

ProjectWorld * BusinessAnalystWorld Toronto 2007 is over.
This is the largest event if the year that I am involved in… by far. 2700 delegates five days – 3300 bodies all in when you count the speakers, trainers, exhibitors, my wife and my daughter…

It’s a huge effort by everyone involved – and well worth every ounce of effort. I often complain about the stress leading into it, the exhaustion during the event and the endless catch up afterwards but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

Highlights? The workshops – 39 of them – all filled almost to capacity. The track sessions seemed to go well- we’ll wait to see the evaluations. The keynote got pretty good reviews. The food was alright – considering we had to feed as many as 1500 on any one day.

The opening conference reception on Tuesday night was fabulous. We all had fun. The delegates loved it – especially the ones who were just there for the workshop on Monday and Tuesday.

The disappointments? The biggest let down was the formal roundtable discussions on Thursday morning. I blew it! This was a new event for the Toronto conference. We’ve been doing this session instead of a second keynote at all of our smaller regional events: Boston, Chicago, Washington DC, Montreal and Vancouver.

If I had spent a few minutes in front of the 1400 delegates on Wednesday morning explaining what it was all about – how it worked and how great it would be – it would have been fine. But I didn’t. I never even mentioned it in my opening comments to delegates. What a mistake!

So Thursday morning rolls around and only 400 of the 1200 potential delegates show up. They loved it! But I was so disappointed the other others took a pass.

My biggest challenge will be the choice to run them again next year or not.

New ideas? I had a few great ideas come my way via delegates during the conference. One of them – Saturday/Sunday workshops for the billable consultants out there who cannot afford the loss of billable days. Interesting.

So – now we do the post mortem, record our ideas for next year, tabulate the evaluations and move onto the next show. Washington in April, Montreal in May, Minneapolis, Houston and Atlanta in June and Sydney/Melbourne in August … I am stressed already.

Mike Morton

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