Some exhibitions and conferences just have a buzz about them.
Pink 11 for instance was a stand out event which is still sending ripples out through the ITSM community that are influencing people who weren't even there.
Last year's Service Desk and IT Support Show was getting there. This year's was definitely buzzing.
We've recorded tons of material for the podcasts, including an episode towards the end of the show that included an incredible mix of incredible people saying incredible things. I'll update the link as episodes become available but for now here is the review of day 1
I've said before on the podcast that I think this show is many things to many people, so my experience is only one take on it, but there seemed to be broad agreement that this year was very successful.
To be honest I found that for the second year running I failed to achieve a lot of my objectives. I didn't get to speak to half the vendors I wanted to, and the less said about the number of sessions I managed to attend the better. In fact I only just made my own session on Lean ITSM. Yes, my unsubtle hints last year must have paid off. The reason I struggled to fit things in was the sheer volume of conversations I was having with other attendees and exhibitors. Incidentally it was great to meet so many people who read this blog and listen to the podcast, thanks to all of you who found the time to say Hi, and apologies to any one I didn't get round to meeting.
I was actually quite taken aback by the number of people who came to my session. Since I tend to take on the more esoteric subjects it isn't often I have people standing in the aisle to hear me.The message that IT is about delivering value to others and to do that you need a cultural shift is hardly new, but at this year's event there seemed to be a lot of people for whom that message was really hitting home and it was echoed in several sessions. Other hot topics included BYOD and the ever popular Service Catalogue
Sessions generally were really busy, the only disappointment for me was that the audiences in several of them seemed reticent to raise questions. I did feel the programme was a little more exciting than last year, but as ever at this event it was clear that many in the audience were looking for really useful ideas to take away, not just theory. Which is a nice link into the launch of the new Back2ITSM website. OK there isn't much there yet, but we got promises of help from some big names in the ITSM world, so watch this space.
It was interesting to observe tool vendor stands. I got the distinct impression that there were more in depth conversations taking place and that prospective customers had done their homework and had a really good idea of where they were intending to go with a new tool-set. Mobile and social seemed to be high on many wishlists.
Maff Rigby and James West have posted their views on the show which are well worth reading. James has some concerns about the overall impression it gave of how we are reacting to change - it is probably a good job Rob wasn't speaking. I understand where James is coming from, but it took his article to remind me why I gave this post the title I did.
I believe that we will look back on this show in the same way many in the industry look back on Pink11, as a landmark event where we, as an industry, realised, in a multitude of different ways, that we have to change how we work, how we support the business, how we support each other and how we educate and support our teams.
No, the show didn't provide all the answers, but the questions are now on the table in full view, the genies are out of the bottle, and the elephant has been asked to sit down and take tea with the vicar.
I'm going to end by returning to the subject of the podcasts, because as I said we finished the show with a humdinger of a recording. Clearly a lot of people were really energized by the show and hopefully that energy will keep us all going to the next big event on the UK calender, and no, I don't mean the Olympics or the Jubilee.