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Heading to ELC

CJD hits the road for much of November. I'm headed down to ELC this afternoon, then out to FCW Events' CIO Summit in San Diego the following week -- election week.

But first up... I'm headed down to Williamsburg, Va. in a few hours for the Industry Advisory Council's Executive Leadership Conference. After several years up in Hershey, Pa., the conference decided to turn south of DC this year. The problem that has raised, according to the complaints I have hears, is that there isn't a hotel in Williamsburg that is big enough to hold everybody. Therefore folks are scattered across several hotels, which seems less than desirable.

When I started covering this stuff more than a dozen years ago (YIKES!), ELC was really the conference to attend. The program should still be good -- it ususally is -- but they seem to get fewer government people. So it will be interesting to see what this year's program is like and how many government folks attend.

Early this year I was criticized for this blog post critical of a speaker down at the Management of Change conference in June. The speaker was a House member and apparently it took some work to get him there, so...

This seems to be a difficult time for government IT conferences. If this -- or any -- conference is going to survive and thrive, people need to get some real value out of them. People are just so busy, taking more than two days out of the office has real costs, and therefore there needs to be some real benefits if it is going to be worthwhile. This just seems to have become more true as people have become more busy -- and there is such a proliferation of conferences. These programs offer networking opportunities, which is great. It's always excellent to get to see people outside of the workplace. But, for me, the value comes -- and I'm most interested in -- people who get me to think in different ways. We have reporters who get stories, but I'm always looking for new and different ways of covering issues. So the next few days should be fun and very interesting... and I'll report back as much as possible.

Meanwhile, here is the agenda for the conference, if you are interested.

Now I'm off to cheer on a few friends who are running in DC's Marine Corps Marathon. Go Mary Beth and Jacki!

Posted by Christopher Dorobek on Oct 29, 2006 at 12:15 PM


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