VMworld 2013 Reflection


I will say that VMworld is bar far two of the busiest weeks of my year while working at VMware.  This year has been no exception to that.  Since joining Technical Marketing, it got even busier for me but I love the interaction and personally I love presenting to all the attendees.  I wanted to thank all of you that attended my sessions this year.  There is however something that I wanted to say so that all those that do attend understand a few things about us as presenters.

Like many presenters, I read all the surveys and I ask in ever session that people fill them out.  I am grateful to see the all the results and understand how we can improve over the previous sessions.  In many cases if a session is repeated we use the data to update the second showing, or improve it from the US conference to the Europe conference.  That being said there is something I have noticed in recent years which does concern me.

More and more it seems we are getting less survey results and more attendees, but more importantly the comments are becoming much less constructive.  What I mean is that I for one enjoy reading the comments sections, but when there are comments like “No Demo”, or “Added no value”, that does not really help us as presenters make adjustments.  Someone long ago told me that if you want to improve something you can always state what is wrong, but also provide at least a suggestion on a way to improve it.

As presenters VMworld is not an event we “have to” do, it’s something we “want to” do and we love to do.  I for one do it for all of you that attend so you can learn new things.  I was a customer just like all of you, and when I attended I always tried to provide constructive feedback for the sessions.  Back then it was all paper based and even harder to do.  These events take us away from our families, and the other daily duties we have, so I guess all I am saying is be respectful in your comments.  Realize that we are doing this for you, and for many of us it’s a ton of work that’s beyond any of our normal job functions.  We do it because we love to help you learn, so in turn help us learn how we can do it better.  Do that with constructive comments, and using the surveys as your voice to get changes on the sessions for following years.

Personally even if the feedback is negative, I still use that as a way to adjust.  It means I could do something better.  If you have a negative comment, I’m cool with that, but please provide a useful suggestion on how I can improve.  I’ve got a thick skin, but I cannot improve if the only feedback is not something I can use.  Other than that 2013 has been another great year for me at VMworld.  I hope to continue helping people learn more in the months to come about VMware Hybrid Cloud Service.  As always just let me know how I can help and how I can improve to bring you the best content I can.  I realize this post is a bit late for US attendees and maybe I should have posted it after that conference, but it really only reminded me as I was reading the surveys thus far this morning.

Don’t get me wrong there were plenty of good and bad comments all around, the bottom line is a little more detail on why it was good or bad and how to improve is just helpful.

About Chris Colotti

Chris is active on the VMUG and event speaking circuit and is available for many events if you want to reach out and ask. Previously to this he spent close to a decade working for VMware as a Principal Architect. Previous to his nine plus years at VMware, Chris was a System Administrator that evolved his career into a data center architect. Chris spends a lot of time mentoring co-workers and friends on the benefits of personal growth and professional development. Chris is also amongst the first VMware Certified Design Experts (VCDX#37), and author of multiple white papers. In his spare time he helps his wife Julie run her promotional products as the accountant, book keeper, and IT Support. Chris also believes in both a healthy body and healthy mind, and has become heavily involved with fitness as a Diamond Team Beachbody Coach using P90X and other Beachbody Programs. Although Technology is his day job, Chris is passionate about fitness after losing 60 pounds himself in the last few years.

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