Oh, Canada! PMI Global Congress 2012 Recap

Alison Clancy | October 26, 2012

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As I write this blog post, I’m sitting in my sweatpants, surrounded by Emergen-C laced water, peppermint tea, a roll of toilet paper masquerading as a box of tissues, and ice cream. Yes, I’ve got a fever, and the only prescription is a 12 hour long nap (just kidding, boss!).

But you know what? Getting slightly derailed today by a wayward virus was totally worth it. Exhibiting last weekend at PMI Global Congress 2012 in beautiful, if unpleasantly cold, Vancouver was one of those experiences that you don’t have too often. Not only did the LiquidPlanner team and I have a great time showing off our brand new booth and newly designed product while meeting like-minded colleagues from every background and country, but we also took the city by storm in the form of an eating marathon I like to refer to as LP’s Food Tour: Vancouver Style.

So without further ado (plus I’m running out of toilet paper/tissues and will need to restock if there’s any hope of breathing out of my nose in the near future), here are my Top Three Moments from PMI Global Congress 2012, paired with our Top Three Meals.

1. Seeing our new booth put together on a conference floor for the first time. 

No, I’m not a certified project manager, but I am someone who takes on projects and is responsible for seeing them from start to finish. So please forgive me if I take special pride in seeing my baby walk for the first time at PMI Global Congress. After months of planning, meetings, designer consultations, and one big ol’ deadline that came and went like a thief in the night, the booth came out exactly how we wanted. It’s simplistically modern. It tells you just enough to make you want to come to the booth to find out more about what we do. It’s a shade of blue that rivals the waters of Greece (I’ve never been there but I’m just going to assume). And it made it all the way to Canada in one piece, a day before the conference started. I think it’s only right to take pride in a job well done, don’t you think?

Vancouver Meal Pairing: Poutine

2. Dale Driver mentioning us in his talk on Monday.

If I had a gold coin for every time we wrote on this blog about how much we loved our customers, I would be swimming in a bath tub full of money while wearing a finely tailored vest and top hat, a la Scrooge McDuck. Let’s add one more coin to that pile, shall we?

Unbeknownst to us, Dale Driver, manager of the IT PMO at the University of West Georgia, was scheduled to give a talk at the conference on Monday morning called, “Using Project Management Governance to Clear the Logjam.” And in that talk, he devoted not one, but TWO slides to LiquidPlanner and went into detail about why he thinks we’re worth our salt as a PM tool. There’s nothing better than seeing someone take your message and spreading it to the masses because they believe in you so strongly.

So let’s all give a major hat tip to Dale, and also to all the people he sent our way during the conference. If I really was Scrooge McDuck, I would give my money-filled bath tub to him in a heartbeat.

Vancouver Meal Pairing: Samosas at Vij’s

3. Meeting a whole gaggle of new friends and colleagues. 

Perhaps shaking so many hands at the conference is in fact the reason why I’m at home drinking chicken soup broth like there’s a worldwide shortage, but what a great group of people to contract germs from!

Jen, Jason and I must have given hundreds of demos to people who had never heard of us, who were diehard fans, and people who were just confused as to why our pens were so large. I had nonstop conversations with project management professionals who were not only smart and kind, but who had their own unique perspective on what we (and the industry) were up to. Sometimes when you’re working with a product every day you can get wrapped up in it, and you might miss something obvious that’s right in front of your face. That’s why it’s so important to get out there and talk to those who are seeing your work for the first time. This is when the real epiphanies and A-HA! moments happen.

So whether you came to our booth for the conversation or if you just wanted to marvel at the fact that Jen and I were both wearing 3-inch heels for six hours straight every day, know this: we really appreciate it.

Vancouver Meal Pairing: Sushi (But More Importantly, Poutine Sushi)

In summary, here are the main things I’ve taken away from PMI Global Congress 2012:

  1. Working on a booth for months at a time will be worth it.
  2. Our customers are great.
  3. Our new friends and potential customers are equally great.
  4. Use more hand sanitizer.
  5. When in doubt, keep eating.