Over the past couple of months, we have had some great opportunities to bring our customers together and share experiences. Talking with customers, hearing about their challenges, and working to better understand the value that our solutions and technologies deliver is one of the best parts of my job, but providing a forum for customers to talk to one another is a completely different experience.
It Started in Vegas
No, this isn’t another sequel to The Hangover. Our few months of watching customers interact with one another started at Momentum at EMC World 2016. While there was plenty of discussion throughout the entire week, the highlight was on Monday, when we kicked off our Energy & Engineering track with an industry panel discussion.
This year’s industry panel featured several customers and partners, as well as a few EMC industry veterans. While we started off with some planned discussion topics around digital transformation, the conversation quickly moved to being driven by the customers in attendance, both on the panel and in the audience. The customers discussed how they are managing to keep their businesses profitable in today’s economy, how Operational Excellence programs are more important today than ever to reduce costs and maximize efficiencies, and the role of IT enabling their businesses to succeed.
Let’s Meet in Houston
Last month, we reinstituted an event that used to be a regular tradition with Documentum customers in Houston, the Momentum User Group meeting. With an agenda driven by – you guessed it – customers, we met for an entire morning last month to give our customers a chance to learn, share, and ask questions.
In addition to a couple of customer-led presentations, sharing their information management strategies and initiatives, we again featured a customer and partner industry panel to discuss many of the same topics that we covered in Las Vegas. Like Momentum, the conversation quickly became driven by our customers, with familiar topics like digital transformation, cloud initiatives, and operational excellence dominating the discussion.
The feedback we received from our customers at this event was excellent! In fact, a few folks mentioned that it would be nice to extend the meeting by another hour or two for even more interaction and networking. We will be helping our customers “continue the conversation” by working with them to schedule future events for this community. This meeting was a great start!
It’s a Global Economy, so Virtual Meet-ups Were Next
The reality is that not all of our customers are able to join us in Las Vegas or in Houston, so we kicked off a series of virtual roundtables last month, as well. During these sessions we met up, Google Hangout-style with a select number of customers. The format worked beautifully, enabling our customers to both share and listen to others experiencing the same challenges. A special shout-out to these customers, as they were extremely open and provided great detail about their operational excellence initiatives.
More of these sessions are planned through the end of the year; if you’re interested in joining, please reach out to me directly.
Helping customers share experiences and best practices remains an important part of our role as a solution and technology provider. Our industry solutions represent this collaboration, but I really appreciate the interaction, the shared experiences, and the new learnings directly. And no, we’re not done with these initiatives.
- Momentum Barcelona will be taking place October 31st – November 3rd
- There are several Customer.NEXT events scheduled in the U.S. throughout the month of October (for those in the Oil & Gas industry, please plan to join us in Austin, Texas).
For those that weren’t able to join us in person, let’s continue the conversation here (leave a comment) or on Twitter (you can reach me at @sean_baird)!