There is less than a week left until the start of conneXion Madrid, our yearly conference and expo. All the pieces of the puzzle are slowly coming together on our end (the only variable left is the weather – but no worries, we already have our springtime dance moves ready!), and we want our attendees to be as prepared and ready to roll as we are! Whether you are a seasoned conneXion participant or you are brand new to the event, here is a quick list of tips to help you make the most of your conneXion experience.
1. Decide who you want to meet
This year’s schedule includes some great speakers from the LS Retail product teams as well as from other key names in the technology and retail world. If you have always wanted to talk to one of our presenters, perhaps to pick their brain or show them a great idea you have had, this is the right time! Note down their names, and if unsure, ask someone from the staff to introduce you – they will be happy to help. Although our speakers are great, much of the value of conneXion is in our attendees. conneXion is the meeting place of the LS Retail ecosystem, and many people like to attend the conference again and again. Figure out who you want to meet in advance, schedule a meetup and perhaps start a new, mutually profitable partnership.
2. Update your social profiles
Let people know that you are coming to conneXion! Join our event on Facebook and use the #cXmadrid hashtag. This way it will be easier for other conference attendees to find you. After all, there’s nothing better than coming back from a conference with both new knowledge and a few more networking contacts.
conneXion is structured in three conference tracks. There’s a lot to see – so read the agenda carefully, and plan ahead! We have lined up a diverse mix of presentations, featuring keynotes on the future of retail, interactive discussions, sales-focused presentations as well as in-depth sessions for the more technically inclined.
4. Bring your questions
Conferences are a great learning opportunity, and not just while sessions are going on. Take advantage of your peers’ knowledge, and of the diverse mix of businesses present! Prepare a list of industry questions you want answers to, and ask different people for their perspective. Are you curious about what experts in other regions think about Microsoft Dynamics 365? Do you want to make sure LS One is as great an investment as you have heard through the grapevine? This is the place when you can get honest answers from businesses like yours. Preparing pre-arranged topics to discuss is also a great way to break the ice!
5. Stay at the conference hotel
This year conneXion will take place at Meliá Castilla Hotel, in downtown Madrid. There are many advantages to staying in the official conference hotel. Our favorite two are: 1) the networking opportunities, as most other attendees are also staying there (some of the best businesses deals are made at the hotel bar, we are told), and 2) the possibility to wake up at the last minute, as the conference venue is just a few seconds’ elevator ride away.
6. Download the #cXmadrid app
Download our brand new app and start creating your own agenda by starring your favorite sessions. In the app, you can also find information about this year’s speakers; discover fellow attendees, and get in touch with them; rate your sessions; answer polls; and much more!
7. Visit the Expo
If you are interested in innovative retail technologies, you cannot miss the Expo. Located next to the two breakout rooms, this year’s Expo features very diverse sponsor and exhibitors. Find out how to improve replenishment in your stores at AGR’s Platinum Sponsor booth; try out latest-generation hardware at the stand of Platinum Sponsor HP; head to ClickLearn’s Platinum Sponsor booth and get an introduction to the market leading e-learning authoring solution for Microsoft Dynamics. And don’t miss the chance to experience Microsoft’s latest multi-touch collaboration device – yes, there will be a Surface Hub for you to test at Microsoft’s Diamond booth!
We highly suggest truly taking these two days off to focus on the conference. Of course, life goes on outside the Meliá Castilla hotel, business calls need to be answered and deadlines approach and pass; but if you can, delegate. You will get so much more out of the experience if you decide to silence your phone for a few hours, close Skype, and just focus on the sessions and the face-to-face encounters.
9. Don’t stress over it!
conneXion is not one of those conferences where you have to pick a backup session because the rooms are so crowded you may not fit. You also won’t be required to show up hours earlier and stand in a queue to enter, and definitely won’t need to bring a snack and drink from home because the queues for food are so long they will use up your whole lunch break. Our conference is designed so that our attendees can take advantage of the learning and networking opportunities without having to worry about running across long corridors to get to another session in time. There is always a fifteen-minute break between sessions — enough time for you to find your way around, grab a coffee and stop for a quick chit-chat with a fellow attendee before moving on to the next session. And afterwards, you will receive a link with all the presentation slides, so you can review what you have learned. We look forward to seeing you at conneXion – get ready to be inspired!