TechEd Europe T-14 Days!

TechEd Europe T-14 Days!

  • Comments 7

Just a fortnight to go now until TechEd Europe. The schedule is now completed, the attendee website goes live this afternoon, and session voting has started. A quick explanation of session voting: when you log in to the attendee website for the first time, you'll be offered the opportunity to select which sessions you think you'll attend at the conference. This is really important from our point of view - we use this survey to try and anticipate how large a room will be required for each session and avoid having sessions filled beyond capacity. Not only does your vote count, but it's also a great way of viewing all the sessions and building your schedule ahead of time to maximise the value of the conference.

Registrations still continue to come in - it's a source of amazement to me how late people leave it to book for a conference like this! We've already got more customers attending than at last year's conference: and with over forty more breakout sessions compared to last year, there's going to be plenty of choice.

So here are my top tips for making the most of a conference like this:

  • Plan your schedule in advance, so that you don't have to waste time at the event selecting from all 300 sessions;
  • Leave at least 25% of your schedule free for labs, chalk and talks, panels, exhibition visiting etc.;
  • Bring your laptop in an old bag you want to dump, and then when you get the TechEd attendee rucksack, you won't have two bags to carry back home;
  • Remember that the sessions are just a small part of the overall conference: if there's a particular subject you really want extra information on, the speakers will often be prepared to chat in greater depth in the Microsoft Pavilion or even over a coffee on a one-to-one basis;
  • If something is bugging you or you're not satisfied with your experience so far, post a note in the attendee forum: we're listening and will do what we can to help out.
  • Ask around in your department to solicit a list of technical questions that your company needs the answers to - and then hang around in the Microsoft Pavilion until you get a response. That way you demonstrate the benefits of attendance to the company and make it easier to "sell" the idea for TechEd 2005!
  • One more: don't forget to allocate time for waiting near the Dove bar distribution areas. (It pays to make friends with some of the conference service folks - get the inside scoop on when and where the bars are to be delivered.)
  • Reminds me the coffee at the RAI centre was pretty good last time I was there.
  • Not sure about leaving 25% free schedule.. Having trouble choosing between 2-3 sessions per slot at the moment!

    Also I think Club TechEd rules are a bit strict. I was at both 2001, 2002 and now 2004 TechEds and I don't qualify?!

    Finally let me suggest that people attending while it is their birthday should get some kind of gift (my suggestion has nothing to do with my birth date being 2nd July thus always coinciding with TechEd dates :-)
  • > "Plan your schedule in advance"

    Yes, but also always have a reserve in case the speaker is terrible / over your head / etc.

    At Tech-Ed it's wise to make sure in advance that the reserve is located close to the first choice and if it isn't create a new reserve.

    (At Tech-Ed Barcelona it once took me 15 mins to find my alternative)

    Your final one was good - BUT. I asked bosses here what topics they wanted me to attend sessions on. Only one replied and I doubt if there is one on that topic!
  • >when you log in to the attendee website for >the first time

    So far I've been asked this all the times I've logged on, even though I filled it out the first time. :) But the idea is good. :)
  • This is as designed... We Really Really Really want you to vote.. This will be removed tomorrow once voting is finished....
  • few additional tips ;-)
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