The Joy of Speaking and the ExpertZone Developer Summit 2008

I’ll be back to Stockholm in early April, delivering a talk at one of the main IT conferences in Sweden. For such a technology-centric event, it is quite fascinating to see an entire track dealing with the often neglected issues of people working together. We should really give the organizers a standing ovation for such a splendid decision.

My talk is titled “Passionate Teams and Cooperative Customers: Agile tales of creative customer communication”. I have the abstract here for your convenience:

“In this session, Claudio presents stories of effective collaboration, thinking tools and valuable insights that can transform “incompetent” customers and “arrogant” teams into unstoppable forces.

We are getting so used to complexity that we no longer notice it. To bring simplicity to our software however, we need to communicate effectively with our customers, distill their knowledge and bake it into our domain models. Yet, we focus so much on improving our technical skills that we often offer elaborate solutions to the wrong problems, unprepared to deal with a world where perception is far more important than logic.”

If you happen to be at the conference, make sure you attend my session! I bet you won’t be disappointed ;-).

Freddie Krueger The list of stars that will join me at the event is, quite frankly, a tad intimidating (see here).

I always wonder about what drives people to speak in public. Is it the genuine spirit of contribution? Perhaps the publicity and recognition that inevitably goes with it? Is it maybe the excitement of being on stage? It’s probably a combination of all of that and more; my biggest reason, however, is to confront my greatest fears: speaking in public is like Freddie Krueger, a pure nightmare becoming real. In fact, it is the preparation and the waiting for the moment of truth that drives me nuts. All my insecurities emerge all of the sudden, my entire body reacts, and I become absurdly anxious. Then again, once on stage, everything changes completely: I’m on a mission, I’m (over)prepared, I just can’t fail.

So, there you go. It is never easy and probably it will never be. I still haven’t won my fears at all, but the past rewarded me with really good memories (like when, a million years ago, I addressed a group of scientists at CERN for a whole week, for example), and the future will surely hold even better ones.

By the way, have you ever considered speaking in public? There is a good chance that your own community would love you to volunteer on a topic you feel passionate about. If you live in Ireland like I do, this is definitely the case. It takes a lot of commitment, but perhaps this year you could try. Just don’t let your fears eat you. People want you to succeed, don’t you know?

Claudio Perrone

My passion is to develop the critical thinking skills of people and help them bring the best of their work to the world. Lean & Agile management consultant, startup strategist, award-winning speaker and entrepreneur. Creative force behind A3 Thinker and PopcornFlow.

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Luca Minudel

    Hi Claudio, I’m interested in Creativity applied to IT as you do.

    I feel that software and software development is a great field to obtaing a lot of value from creativity expecially because software is not constrained by the boundaries of the phisical world.

    Hope to find in your posts inspireiting ideas

  2. Marsha

    I frankly knew about many of this, but however, I still thought it had been valuable. Very good post!

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