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Why I Go to Conferences – My first #ESPC18 Experience

Today I have the fortune to not only attend #ESPC18, but also be a speaker at this great conference. All the way from South Africa, it’s even more special that I get to see my #Microsoft #Office365 family again. 

I have no idea how many conferences I’ve attended or spoke at, but I always have the same experience when the conference starts. I’m in awe. What incredible times to be alive, and to be part of this community and together with Microsoft, enable and empower millions of people. 

The opening to the European SharePoint, Office 365 & Azure Conference in Copenhagen, did not disappoint.  

At first, I was surprised with the ladder on stage, wondering if it was left there by accident, giggling to myself that we’re all human, after all. I was wrong. I could hear drums in the background and soon four talented men met up on stage, to blow us away. The “Copenhagen Drummers”. For a couple of minutes, I sat, mesmerized, drums beating in my chest. The perfect way to get my blood pumping, bursting with excitement for the conference which was about to start. 

With just over 2100 attendees from 68 different countries, I have never felt more at home. In South Africa we have a Nguni Bantu term “Ubuntu” which means “I am who I am, because of who we all are.” That is the perfect explanation for why I go to conferences. Apart from the knowledge sharing, the value I get from being surrounded by the #Microsoft #Community is invaluable.  

In the opening Keynote, Jeff Teper (CVP, Office, SharePoint & OneDrive, Microsoft, USA) mentioned the SharePoint Saturday Events that happen all over the world, and how incredible the community is. I absolutely agree. We are always surround by people prepared to help & listen. And at conferences we have the wonderful opportunity of making new friends, building a bigger support group and also to help others. 

 

Learn | Network | Be Inspired 

If you’re at the conference, please say “hi” to me and make a new friend. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and talk to the speakers, we’re just normal, everyday people. I hope this conference changes your life, as I’m sure it will mine. 

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