In preparation for Pulse 2010
in Las Vegas, I interviewed Lizz Restat, the Pulse track lead for Cloud Computing
. She shared some tips on submitting a topic and abstract
for Pulse. Lizz will be collaborating with a team of IBM experts to review all the submissions this month, so getting your submission in soon is paramount.
Lizz was generous enough to share some advice to help you increase your chance of
having your topic selected for the Pulse conference. Here's how it went down.RH: Hey Lizz, what are the hot topics in the area of cloud computing today?
LR: Overall, enterprises are very curious about the promise of cloud computing and are looking for ways to get either started with or broaden their adoption of cloud. However, in addition to being interested in potential cost and time savings associated with cloud implementation, enterprises are also maintaining their focus on the same set of IT priorities that existed in “Traditional,” computing -- primarily security and compliance, assurance levels for resource availability, and resource performance.
RH: Which cloud topics would you really like to see presented at Pulse next year and what would separate the compelling ones from the pack?
LR: I’m looking for client presentations that will allow us to show the entire spectrum of what enterprises are doing today in the cloud -- starting with those organization that are just in the early stages and beginning to make use of public clouds to manage spikes -- all the way to the other end of the spectrum with organizations that are already looking to convert major pieces of their existing IT infrastructure to a cloud model. Everyone’s story and sharing of those experiences has the potential to be compelling for our Pulse attendees.
In addition, I’d of course like for us to showcase the IBM solutions for cloud computing that offers answers to the three major enterprise adoption topics I mentioned earlier:
- Security and compliance
- Assurance levels (aka SLAs)
I’d be looking for solutions from across major industries, but especially Finance, Government, Healthcare and Manufacturing
RH: Okay so now that we know the hot topics and what you would like to see as far as topics in the Cloud track, what are the benefits of submitting a proposal for Pulse?
LR: Submitting your proposal is an excellent way to gain visibility for your work. Customers with a selected proposal will receive a complimentary pass to attend Pulse at no charge ($1,995 value) and admission to the on-site VIP client lounge. Attending Pulse will not only be a great way to share your company’s success implementing cloud computing, but it is also a great education and networking opportunity.
RH: Now that we know the benefits of submitting a proposal, who are good candidates for submitting abstracts?
LR: I strongly encourage submissions that mirror our audience for Pulse as much as possible, and as such I think that we’d be looking for topics by and for IT Director/Managers, Service Architects, Systems Administrators, Security Analysts, Storage Managers, Data Center Managers, and Business Transformation Managers.
The watchword should be experience – we want to showcase our clients experience as much as possible. So I will be looking primarily for people in the roles above from our client pool. I am also considering forming a few panels including clients speaking along with IBM executives so I encourage clients who would like to speak on a topic they feel passionate about that fit the criteria I mentioned to submit their proposal and let me know if they have an IBM speaker they would like to partner with in the proposal. I will certainly take all submissions under consideration.
Also if we have Architects / Administrators from either IBM Business Partners or from Global Technology Services, I think that would be a great combination.
RH: What about the Expo at the event, this year clients had a great opportunity to see our solutions in action. Will they have the same opportunity at next year's event?
LR: Yes; for sure. And I will be looking for subject matter experts to work with us to demonstrate and showcase our products – both during the cloud track and then during demo time afterwards at the Expo. That said, I encourage the participation of developers or service delivery people who would like to do a “best practices” or “secrets to success” presentations showcasing and using IBM products.
RH: I am sure our clients will find these tips really useful Lizz. What are you looking for in a good proposal as far as CONTENT - we all know content is king?
LR: Content-wise, three things: client value, client value, client value. We need to make sure we have meaningful technical content, but the key is going to be showing conference attendees how the products and solutions we’ll be discussing can help them become leaner, more efficient organizations on the path to a dynamic infrastructure.
Good proposals will need to have the “how” the customer can do this. But great proposals will actually include “how” with proven time and cost savings numbers.
RH: I’m sure people will want to know what you are NOT looking for in the proposals too. Any advice?
LR: What we’re not going to be looking for is for speakers who “define” the cloud. We’ll be doing that in our track kick-off and potentially in a couple sessions in the cloud track, but we’re looking to take things to the next level by focusing on cloud implementations in the 2010 conference.
RH: Lizz, I am sure anyone considering submitting a proposal for Pulse 2010 will find your advice and tips valuable. Any last comments?
LR: Proposals should describe the initial pain points or problems that existed, how our solutions helped, and the lessons learned that could be applied to other customer situations. This type of proposal and session at Pulse will benefit everyone.
I want to ensure attendees are eager to spend their time listening to the speakers. Proposals should be a preview of the best five minutes of the presentation material -- much like a movie trailer will often reflect the best five minutes of a 90 minute film. Abstracts in particular will be re-purposed in the Pulse program to draw attendees to the sessions, so write your proposal with the intent of attracting the most enthusiastic audience possible.
RH: Finally, what is the deadline for submitting call for speaker proposals and abstracts?
LR: The deadline is November 2nd
- which means you have a little over 3 weeks to get your submission entered. I evaluate proposals as they come in so get yours in asap.
With such great guidance from Lizz, I am confident you will write a compelling
proposal however time is of the essence. Don’t delay, submit your proposal today.
If you need some help convincing your boss on the value of attending
Pulse be sure
to check out this justification
letter. Need more on why stepping up to the microphone at Pulse 2010 makes sense, take a look at this article. I hope to see you in Las Vegas in February!
If you have any questions on submitting abstracts for Pulse or
want feedback on have an idea, just leave a blog comment here.