I apologize! The other day when I wrote about getting approvals at Research In Motion (RIM®) to attend BlackBerry World™ and introducing Scott Totzke’s personal invitation to Government Day at BlackBerry World, I suggested that you, my IT leader readers, somehow have it easy. Perhaps I even insinuated that getting approval to attend BlackBerry World was a cake walk, and that only I had to suffer through justification and business case presentations. But clearly this is not the case! As many folks have pointed out, your budgets are tight, time is never on your side, and you have to justify conference attendance just like I do.
Having attended BlackBerry World since the inaugural event (back in the days when it was WES!), I often take for granted that customers (and their bosses) inherently understand the value of the conference. After all, once you’ve attended, you just get it. In fact, based on our BlackBerry World 2011 Survey:
- 96% of attendees stated that “attending BlackBerry World was important to their organization”
- 99% of attendees “would recommend BlackBerry World to a colleague”, and
- 98% of attendees “plan to attend BlackBerry World again” (hopefully taking advantage of the alumni discount!)
But if you’ve never attended BlackBerry World, you wouldn’t know the experience for yourself. So, in addition to my apology, I’ve pulled together some reasons for attending BlackBerry World that you should consider.
Have a look at this presentation for the details: “Roger’s Top 5 BlackBerry World 2012 Attendance Justification Conversations To Have With Your Boss At The Water Cooler”.
Also, the BlackBerry World Conference catalogue covers a broad range of topics — you just might find exactly what you’re looking for. In fact, 84% of the attendees surveyed at BlackBerry World 2011 reported that “the breakout session catalog covered the topics they wanted to hear about.”
But beyond my “BlackBerry World 2012 Attendance Justification Conversations” – and in addition to all the work that goes into scheduling, preparing, promoting, learning from, and implementing various sessions – deep down, I think the single most valuable part of BlackBerry World is the people. I can’t put a price on this, or explain how it happens, but BlackBerry World simply brings so many of the right people together and creates the right environment that ‘magic’ is bound to happen. I’ve personally experienced it every year I’ve attended. You just might sit down to lunch and within minutes realize you’re seated with the one developer that has the exact application you’re after, an industry analyst who consulted on a similar business issue in Europe last year, a manufacturing customer who faced similar implementation challenges, and a system integrator that’s based near your office, but you’ve never run into before! Getting this brain trust together could take months of voicemail-tag and email trails. This fortuitous meeting of the minds can be invaluable. In fact, 88% of last year’s surveyed attendees claimed “BlackBerry World helped them meet colleagues (with whom) they would collaborate with in the future.”
So whether you base your attendance on the content or the networking, there’s something for everyone at BlackBerry World. So consider registering for BlackBerry World today…and if my “BlackBerry World 2012 Justification Conversations” do the trick, your boss might even come along, and maybe your team might then be able to take advantage of the group discount! Of course, you’ll have to be on your best behavior if the boss is beside you – but having them see firsthand the potential positive impact mobile technology can have on your company’s business could be worth the effort!
How do you justify conference attendance? Do you have a budget for the year? Per Person? Per topic? What do you say to convince your boss to approve BlackBerry World attendance? I’m sure your peers could benefit from your experience!