Well, I'm preparing my talk for the free Minneapolis BarCamp technology conference tomorrow: Communication For Geeks: How to Influence Your Boss, Your Customers, and Your Team. It will be early in the morning, 9am, so hopefully I'll still have an audience! I'f you're in Minneapolis, please show up!
Ahhh... the U of MN... my old stomping grounds. Almost 400 folks signed up so far, so it should be bigger than the Oregon BarCamp that Jake attended last week... There's also a pre-event mixer at The Bulldog at 8pm tonight... which is the best damn place to get Belgian beer in Minneapolis.
I like presenting first thing in the morning... then I have the rest of the conference to relax. I also enjoy presenting non-tech talks at tech conferences. Last year I talked about marketing with Derrick Shields, which was a blast. This year, I'm talking about conflict resolution with a technology spin.
Personally, I believe communication and conflict resolution are woefully overlooked skills in the technology industry... I mean, a vast vast VAST majority of software projects are complete failures... and if the statistics from the AIIM failure study still ring true, the biggest problem seems to be communication. Its not the technology, its the people. This might be more true in my industry (Enterprise Content Management) than in others (writing device drivers), but its always important.
I figure, these BarCamp folks know plenty about how to make projects successful with technology... but they have no clue how to politely inform their boss that an executive decision is threatening the success of a project. They don't know how to make such a statement, and keep their jobs, and put the project back on track.
If not, come see me at 9am this Saturday...
UPDATE: I got some really good feedback about my session... hopefully it helped a few folks out. Ed Kohler has a review, and a fairly unflattering photo of me ;-)