SQLSaturday Orlando 2019 Begins

We’ll be event number 911, set for September 28th at our usual location at Seminole State College. Maybe something interesting to do there as far as a theme. Call for speakers is open and we’re looking for pre-cons (send quickly, we’ll be deciding in the next week or so).

I have two personal goals for this year:

  • Engage more volunteers throughout the event. How to do that, beyond asking, is the challenge, but asking is a start.
  • Create a better plan/execution process. The core team knows what to do and we’ve done well with a spreadsheet and notes from calls, but it’s not the best thing to hand to the next generation. I’ve debated more than one building out a plan in Project or similar, but for this year I’m trying Trello. It’s free, has a phone app, and the learning curve is close to zero. More on that somewhere during the process.

Our first planning meeting is next week and we’ll be talking about what to try different this year. Some ideas I have:

  • Doing a per-room 15 minute keynote at the start of the day. Maybe themed, maybe just give the keynoter 15 mins to fill. I think its a chance for them to do something different and it makes for easy logistics, no trying to everyone into one big room (and, not so coincidentally, we don’t have one big room this year!)
  • Do something different with the sponsor raffle boxes. We’ve used the same basic cardboard boxes year over year. Maybe the box is a sponsor gift? Not a big win, but not having to store them would be nice.
  • SpeedPASS. Find a way to NOT have a printer on site and still help attendees engage with sponsors.
  • Thinking about what a Monday after the event pre-con would look like. It would give us a chance to market it loudly and clearly on Saturday, but would they be able to make the decision and attend Monday? Maybe tilts some undecideds? Or we can raffle off a couple seats?
  • We’re also thinking this might be the year to do a free day on Thurs or Friday, something that more about ideas than down in the weeds tasks, something that encourages people to explore a new area.

More after the planning meeting.