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Branding ESPC19: Hexagons, Bees and the Magic of the Community

Now that our Call-For-Speakers is closed, and as the 2019 European SharePoint, Office 365 & Azure Conference Programme Team ready themselves to try and create the very best possible mix of speakers, topics and levels that make up the final conference agenda, we’re on the countdown to the ESPC19 Progamme launch in late May, and end of the Super Early bird ticket offer.

A strong programme is central to the conference. We look forward to sharing this year’s version and hope it brings amazing value for attendees in Prague in December – ideas, answers and inspiration for your most pressing work challenges and career aspirations.

Brought together, the conference programme and conference attendees, from speakers to sponsors, guests and delegates, bring ESPC to life. The community of exceptional SharePoint, Office 365 & Azure professionals delivering and experiencing the programme elevates this event and many other events across the community to another level entirely. It’s a feeling, a spirit and a passion to help each other achieve more. You can feel it at the conference, but it’s hard to explain and even harder to bottle. No wonder Jeff Teper calls it ‘the best community in technology’.

Thinking about this spirit of sharing and helping others achieve more, it’s exactly what IT Pro’s, Devs and BDM’s are striving to do every day in their companies, through making the best technology choices, configurations and ongoing management and support to help colleagues do their best work. The expertise of the community, amidst the exceptional speed of change across the industry and world, is a comfort blanket to succeed in doing this, in your career and for your users and stakeholders. It’s the privilege of events like ours to bring each other together to try and facilitate this knowledge sharing, sense making and collective moving forward of the community.

One way we try and capture this essence of the conference and the community, and we thought might be interesting to share here, is through the conference branding. Not through words, but through visuals. As they say ‘a picture paints a thousand words’. The conference branding is the look and feel that changes subtly per conference per year. Working with Ray, our ace designer, to try and capture this community spirit and essence of the conference and how this relates to ESPC19.

This year, we went for a colour palette that draws inspiration from ESPC19’s location, the beautiful, historic city of Prague. With purple representing the warmth of winter (indoors, beside a fire, in a bar, amongst friends, or outside in the fresh air under a nice coat and hat) and the mint green and orange drawing inspiration from the awe-inspiring buildings and churches of Prague.

ESPC19-Prague

Next, Ray suggested hexagons, as the shape that best represents the idea of ‘community’. Worth dwelling on that word for one more moment too perhaps, with the dictionary definition of community as ‘the condition of sharing or having certain attitudes and interests in common’.

Here we draw from nature for 2019 and the incredible value and work of bees. Bees build their honeycomb in the shape of hexagons as it’s (mathematically proven) to be the most efficient shape in nature. Efficiency is one way of saying ‘productivity’ and SharePoint, Office 365 & Azure pro’s are very much in this business. How can we place in the hands of users technology that engages, includes and drives greater productivity. Better outputs with steady or less inputs, what’s not to love?! And so the hexagons represent ‘productivity’, a central shared goal for many in the community and, of course, the Microsoft product suite that brings us all together.

Similarly, bees are masters of collaboration, so the overlapping hexagons represent people working together to create ‘the sum of the parts’. A conference is all about collaboration, people learning from the work of others, connecting, sharing and being inspired by each other. In this way, the overlapping hexagons also very much aim to represent the ESPC tagline of ‘Learn – Connect – Be Inspired.

So, thank you to the bees for not only the honey, but for showing us the genius of working smarter and working together.

The ESPC19 concept is just shapes and colours, the programme and the people in Prague will, without doubt, be the magic of the conference, but we hope this is an interesting way of thinking about that magic and visualising the thought. Thanks for reading!

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