New Encompass user group president Nina Buik is pleased with appeals — the kind of “curb appeal” next month’s Technology Forum venue offers, the heeded appeals for cooperation between vendor and user group, appeals for volunteer work the user group’s local levels. Buik, whose day job is Senior VP for education company MindIQ, took the president’s post at Encompass this year, all while the user group was in express mode, working to get a yearly conference completed in just nine months of work. HP had requested a 2007 conference date in June; last year’s Forum met in September.
Hundreds of scheduled sessions and a dozen served platforms later, the 3000 community, migrating or staying, will get to sample the collaboration between user group and vendor starting June 18 in Las Vegas. This will be Buik’s first show as user group president. She has served on the Encompass board since 2005, taking the reins from Kristi Browder, who we interviewed in 2005.
Buik said she knew she could provide a fresh background to the board from sales and marketing experience. “In business,” she said, “nothing happens until somebody sells something.” And so the group pulls into the home stretch of selling the Technology Forum, along with Encompass membership, this month.
We wanted to talk to an Encompass leader about how the group’s relationship with HP has progressed, HP’s influence and presence in a week that now includes two other HP conferences in Las Vegas, as well as what more Encompass might do for the 3000 community. We spoke by phone in April, just a week before the HP Technology Forum session catalog went live online.
What impacts content selection for a conference, like getting more HP 3000 sessions in the catalog?
If you show up, you’re heard. A lot of people from the OpenVMS community were complaining, noticing that there were fewer sessions that were going to be available. I have to tell you, the highest ranking people are HP executives coming to this event and look at this data. If you don’t show up, those numbers are calculated and next year they determine what’s going to be included. The executives perceive those numbers to be a lack of interest in the technology.
Tell all the folks who are using the HP 3000 technology: Show up. Be heard. Let your numbers speak volumes to HP executives, to let them know what you want and need in your community. This is the event that you want to show up at, to be heard.
So the best chance of having an impact on 3000 content for the 2008 conference is to attend the 2007 conference, then fill out an evaluation that says, “I wish there would have been more for me here.”
Absolutely. If you’re on the planning committee and you see a session had only two or three people, logically you’d say, “I need that room for something else.”