A few months ago, my coworker Chris Bowen up in Boston participated in an all-up user group leadership summit. Microsoft was both a sponsor, as well as the event host. O’Reilly media was a sponsor as well.
The event was known as the Northeast User Group Leader Summit (NEULGS) and drew participation from many groups. Most were not even Microsoft focused! The leaders came together to share tips and ask questions on many issues facing technology groups regardless of the actual technology the group is focused on. Everyone shares similar challenges like finding locations, getting speakers, seeking out sponsorship, growing membership, hosting special events, etc.
Given the vibrant and diverse user group community in the Southeast, particularly around Atlanta, I’m hoping to duplicate the success of that event with a Southeast User Group Leader Summit. Hopefully this would be the seeds of an ongoing “meta” collaboration for the leaders of technical/developer user groups. Here is what I’ve put together so far.
In addition to the Microsoft groups locally and nearby Atlanta, I hope the folks I know who run the PHP group, Web Designers group, the Adobe groups, and others will join in. Hopefully you’ll jump in with your group as well!