Every Social Connections event has been different – after all, each one has been hosted in a new country so far! So the culture, the language and the surroundings definitely influence the kind of atmosphere and interactions that take place. That’s the joy of being a truly international user group! RockTeam was a proud sponsor of Social Connections 8 (yes, e-i-g-h-t) in Boston, Massachusetts in the USA on April 16-17, 2015. We enjoyed hosting the event and presenting sessions at the conference.
Here are the common themes for this ongoing event.
- A gathering of like-minded and passionate advocates of Social Business technologies, collaborative approaches and the use of IBM solutions.
- Awesome content from internationally renowned speakers, plus some case studies that you’ll hear nowhere else.
- Hearing the latest product news – from IBM and from third-party vendors. We’ve been thrilled to hear from IBM product managers at almost every event – including Heidi Ambler, Luis Benitez, Kramer Reeves and in Boston, Suzanne Livingston.
- A mix of business and technical… From high-level strategy and user adoption tips right down to geeky sessions on TDI assembly lines and widget development. The team always aim for a broad mix of deep content.
- An atmosphere of openness and sharing. Attendees come with an attitude of wanting to make the most from the event, the opportunities and to be ready for meeting others that may start as strangers but will likely become friends in the long-run.
- We weave ‘Social’ with ‘social’… This is about having fun, making connections, and re-energising ourselves and each other for the hard work ahead!
The next Social Connections event is to be held in Stuttgart, Germany in October.
RockTeam’s own Keith Brooks presented a session that afternoon, Single Malt vs. Blended – The Email vs. Status Update Game. He presented facts, numbers and ways in which you can limit the abuse of email and free up more time in your day to get work done. You can review the his presentation here: www.slideshare.net/kbmsg/email-vs-ststaus-updates
Friday kicked off with the second major keynote from Ed Brill, followed by a full-day program that included more than 25 fantastic breakout sessions, including for the first time, a series of 15-minute Spotlight ‘TED-style’ sessions for attendees looking for an even greater range of speakers and topics.
- Suzanne Livingston and What’s New in IBM Social Software?
- Chris Stoettner’s slideshare on Best and worst practices deploying IBM Connections
- Read the blog by Luis Benitez: What’s New in the April 2015 Release of IBM Connections Social Cloud
A few things that made us sit up in our chair:
- One session featured a demo of an interface for Activities that makes them much easier to use. Currently the interface is only available in on-premises IBM Connections. The presenter says they will have it ready for Connections Cloud in six months. Activities is a very useful tool in Connections, but can be frustrating to some users. By utilizing this custom interface, Connections is much more attractive to non-technical users.
- Another technology featured makes it possible, easy even, to surface non-Connections applications inside Connections. The presenter demonstrated the surfacing of a Notes discussion database inside Connections, with all usability intact. This is exciting because it points the way to consolidating important tools under a single interface; less need to be jumping back and forth between apps.
Contact RockTeam to find out more about these technologies and how we can bring these solutions to your organization.
The biggest benefit of these conferences is to mingle with the community and share knowledge of the solutions we live and breathe daily. Here are some photos from event. Thanks to Oliver Heinz (@oliheinz) for sharing.
RockTeam’s Vince Klisch and Doug Morrison were some of the first faces to greet you as you entered the event. They were there before, during and after the event with the rest of the team to ensure the success of the first ever US based Social Connections conference.
Doug Morrison along with the other fabulous hosts that worked hard to make the event a success.
IBM Champions are leaders in the industry, that’s where you’ll find Kieth Brooks (on left).
Rocker Doug Morrison getting loose before his presenation at Social Connections 8
RockTeam knows how to bring out the best of our peers, here Brian O’Neill shares some licks on this custom Stratocaster. Jim Casale was the lucky winner of the RockTeam Stratocaster Giveaway, I’m sure he’ll be rocking this guitar among other things he took away from the event.