Hein with toy photoHaving gone to Collaborate with modest expectations, I was not disappointed even though the economy and the swine flu combined to make it a much more mellow event than any previous year.  With attendance down and a large number of sessions, too many excellent presentations were held before very thin audiences – especially on Wednesday and Thursday when many people had already departed.  I would recommend shortening the conference by a day next year and holding fewer presentations. 

The best presentation in front of a small audience that I was aware of was given by Dwight Hawkes of Turner Industries describing in detail a highly successful BI implementation that took place last year.  Customer stories tend to be far more informative than vendor presentations, especially when given by an entertaining person that got his hands dirty doing real hard work.  If you would like to get a copy of his presentation or learn more about what was said just send a quick email to us at info@andrewscg.com

One of the best things about going to a conference is the goodies vendors provide in the expo area, especially for those with young children or grandkids.  One of the most popular this year (determined by a completely biased and wholly unscientific process) is the little talking rubber man pictured above along with John Hein, his friend and voice coach. 

Since he has a few left over (and no small children) John will gladly send one to anyone that contacts him by email until he runs out.  He promises that they will bring minutes of joy and happiness to those young and old lucky enough to get one.  Being a sales rep, John will surely provide you with some information about his RapidReconciler product as well.  If you have the JDE Inventory module chances are you will want to know about it.  Otherwise, feel free to just enjoy the toy. 

If any other vendors from the show want to also make a similar offer to recycle some of their booth goodies let us know and we will spread the word.  It could help ease the pain of not attending for those of you whose bosses were too cheap to let you go.