I had not planned to write any more posts about Microsoft Convergence Atlanta 2010 after my Wrap Up post. However, I can't help myself. There are some final points about the conference that I would like to highlight.
Everyone I spoke to says that the conference was a huge success. I know that Mariano and I enjoyed our time with the partners and customers and are very keen to do it again next year. Here are some of the highlights that I have not mentioned before:
Thanks to Stephen Elop, Kirill Tatarinov, Michael Park, Kevin Schoefield and the various product teams, including Errol Schoenfish, Pam Misialek, Andy Westby and Ben Corwin for their cool demos.
Thanks to the all the sponsors and exhibitors for coming to Atlanta to show us their products, services and solutions. It was great to catch up with many of the longtime Partners that I know from the pre Microsoft Great Plains era, as well as more recent comers. Thanks to the Microsoft team members who manned the Microsoft Pavilion and spent many hours talking to the partners and customers. That includes Ben Corwin and his 150 Gb Virtual PC image!!! (don't ask). Also thanks to the Dynamics Communities team including Arlin Fisher, Nick Hoban and Shane Kvalevog; keep up the great work driving the communities.
Community & Learning Center
Product Communities (Help Desk)
Staffed by Microsoft Engineers including members of the System, Tools, Escalation Engineering and Development teams. In no particular order, thanks to Dave Dusek, David Clauson, Kevin Johnson, Beth Gardner, Dawn Langlie, Chad Aberle, Lucas Miller, Kelly Youells, Nicole Albertson, Lee Duncan, Jerad Plesuk, Larry Ressler, Jennifer Olson, Darin Gross, Jon Studsrud, Terry Heley, Alice Newsam and everyone else (that I may have missed) that took the time to help our Customers and Partners.
During the conference Mariano and I dropped into a couple of sessions organised by the Microsoft Dynamics GP Users Group (GPUG). My aim was to quietly watch and learn to better understand the needs of the customers and partners. That did not happen as we were dragged into the discussions and hopefully contributed useful information. Thanks to John Lowther and Andrew Snook for putting up with us gate crashing their sessions.
Thank you to all the presenters for all the sessions. I do need to highlight Mark Polino's outstanding work with his 50 Tips sessions. If you have not seen the sessions (or even if you have), download the materials from his blog using the links below:
PS: Mark has written a book which is now available for pre-order, see his Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 Cookbook post for details.
I am not a very competitive person. Oh forget it. Yes, I am. I am always working towards perfection in everything I do and the best way to understand how well I am doing is to get feedback. Feedback tells us what we are doing right and also where we can improve. The feedback from the conference came in verbal form when people chatted to me, but also in the form of the session evaluations. Mark has a good account of how our sessions did on his Convergence 2010 Wrap Up post.
In summary, both our customization and administration sessions went well, with the administration session on the Support Debugging Tool being the top rated GP session and coming 3rd overall. Thank you to all those who attended the session and especially to those who provided feedback. There were a few of comments which I felt summed up the response we had:
AWESOME! AWESOME! AWESOME! and that's an understatement!
This went beyond awesome to Stratospherically Phenomenal!
This was worth the price of the conference all by itself.
Becoming aware of the Support Debugging Tool was one of those gems that justified the trip to Convergence.
This tells me that the work and effort (some 700 hours to date) invested in the Support Debugging Tool are justified and that we need to work harder to promote its existence.
Special thanks go to Pam Misialek and Errol Schoenfish who believed in what Mariano and I had to offer and gave us the chance to present our sessions at Convergence.
Signing off from Convergence Atlanta 2010 with a massive "Thank You" to everyone who worked on, sponsored, exhibited at and attended the conference.
Finally, thanks Mariano for helping make all aspects of the trip the success it was.