David Gersten’s Top 8 of WPC 2015 Part 1

For me, WPC 2015 was a completely different experience than those in the past. I feel like this year I spent less time focusing on the parties and celebration part of networking and took advantage of the refreshed floor of the Commons, the amazing General Sessions and the outstanding Keynotes.

The first two items on my Top 8 of WPC15 are: #1 Community and #2 Disruption

Interesting that normally you don’t want these two words side by side but I actually saw a correlation between the two and decided to keep them side by side.

Individually they mean so much to me too.

Community takes me back to my undergraduate days of school studying for my Sociology degree.

Back then I learned that Talcott Parsons defined community as collectivity the members of which share a common territorial area as their base of operation for daily activities. When people asked me afterwards “How was WPC?” all I could say was “It is Community”

Whether or not you were walking through the halls of the hotels, the concourse of the convention center, the Commons, the Country Lounges, the Keynote area, the eating area, the Connect Section, the Social Hub, the many lounges of WIT, IAMCP and ISVs, community existed. When I heard people say “Wow” as they walked into the Commons or when I asked a First Time Attendee how his visit was going and he said “Amazing how I don’t feel alone and I actually don’t know many people here” one could tell that WPC = Community.
Now with any community you hope to see certain things happen. Collaboration, partnering, learning, growth, productivity, rest, excitement, laughter and these all happened in the community I call WPC. Now the challenge I ask each of you is to take this community to the next level – leveraging the other communities in our worlds bring the knowledge all together and make something good of yourself and others.

Disruption by definition is “disturbance or problems that interrupt an event, activity, or process” – Microsoft has been doing this for so long in the area of how we work on a daily basis. This year at WPC the concept of disruption crossed many different areas of our existence. Data, Security, Collaboration, and Productivity all have been and will be impacted further by disruption. New tools, functionality, and solutions, are being announced regularly and as a result we are continuing to experience disruption.

I personally don’t think that disruption is ever going away. I think it is our challenge to figure out how we can adopt our lives and align ourselves with the continued disruptions that Microsoft and other technology companies are introducing to us.

At the beginning of this article I mentioned I saw a correlation between Community and Disruption as it relates to WPC. Having the “Arena” for the keynotes only steps away and literally made out of the convention hall space is one example? Having massive areas to just hang out, network with others, rest and socialize with others is very different than the commons of the past – did this disrupt the way you manage your time and experience at WPC? Hopefully you saw that it is important and beneficial to alter and amend the way you do things to handle certain disruptions.

Part 2 in two weeks: #3 Connect, #4 Learn, #5 Grow and #6 IAMCP