IBM Connections just wrapped up in Orlando, Florida. For the past 20 years it’s been called Lotusphere and somehow I have been able to miss all of them (sarcasm) and was able to attend the inaugural event call IBM Connect.
Energy wise it is on the scale of a Mac World type event. The hype, celebrity and magic is on the same level. We have our own Steve Jobs, just not as bossy. The days are long but the week goes by so fast. The week really starts on Saturday when all the “community leaders” fly in and start enjoying everything Orlando and Disney have to offer. The bloggers and community people are very cool and very tight knit group. I was able to be on the fringes of this group of people. I think if I would have blogged more and been more involved I might have being in the inner circle. Maybe next year? (I am kidding of course)
The opening session was everything I expected. Lots of great new ideas from IBM and people sharing the direction of IBM and the former Lotus product set.
The future is Social Media inside the company and outside the company. It’s funny how many people in companies are fighting social media. You can see them on Facebook and Twitter all day long using it and being social, but if you ask them to open up the companies multi million dollar deployment of IBM Connections they think you are crazy and have no idea why? Currently I work for a large Swedish company and we were featured in s a session, the adoption of the internal social site in North America has been lack luster, and I plan to change that starting next week.
The sessions were awesome. All but one was worth the time I spent seeing them. One of them was probably very useful for some people but the title and description were not what the speaker was actually covering so I left and found something else to listen to. No problems there. Down the one row of halls there were four or five other sessions that were up my alley.
I finally got the oprotunity to meet Mat Newman in person along with Bruce Elgort and his very relaxing wife Gayle who run Elguji Software. There were lots of others who I was meeting for the first time after talking to them online for years and even more people I never got the change to talk to. I guess that will happen next year?
The take away is this. Lotus might be a name that is behind of but there is one company on the face of the earth offering you a social solution that works. With a community of passionate people driving the innovation. There are faults with IBM and it’s products but they listen to the customers. They know they have to listen. This is why IBM Connect is so important.
I sure hope I get to attend 2014! Thanks for making my first IBM Connect an awesome one!