Epicor as a company would be nothing without its customers, and customers wouldn’t get very far without Epicor.
Throw into that mix an array of partners, after all I joined the Epicor world through a partner, and you have a fantastically balanced world of skills, expertise, knowledge, and ideas. More importantly it’s the people, and in the last week I finally got to really understand that community of people, and become a part of it.
On Wednesday, 15th November, 2017 at 08:30 I arrived at the Priest House Hotel, Castle Donnington, UK with an unusual, previously unknown kind of nervous excitement. I had arrived, suited and booted, laptop in tow and ready to showcase myself, represent my company and embrace this wonderful community.
Only 2 weeks prior had I received the invitation to present on Server and SQL Optimisation, a topic I know a fair amount about but the concept of presenting at this level was new to me. That said I think I may have mentioned previously that it was something that interested me, so it was potentially my own doing.
2 weeks to prepare a presentation isn’t a huge amount of time when you have a day job, and a home life to work around, but I relished the challenge and got stuck in, only a few days after the initial request and approval did I discover that I in fact had 2x 1 hour presentation slots…ah… a slightly bigger challenge, but again one to relish.
With 4 days to spare I had 2 presentations written, and a full mirror test complete, with only a slight worry on timings.
Fast forward back to 09:30 on the day and the first presentation begins, 30+ people in the room staring at me wondering how this will go down. 1 hour goes by, maybe a bit more, and it seems to be going ok. The questions are flooding in, I’m somehow managing to respond to all of them, answering everything thrown at me. The feedback continues into the break, a number of people saying “great presentation”, “thanks for the information”, “I’m going to look at X when I get back”. Wow, I actually resonated with some of these people. Bearing in mind that many have been in the Epicor and technology worlds far longer than I have, they seemed to all pick something up from the first one. Great, confidence restored, let’s nail the second presentation.
Before I knew it lunch was served, I was still conversing with various people; customers, partners, ex-colleagues and current ones. It wasn’t until I realised only a sausage roll was left in the room that I had gone through 2 hours of presenting and almost an full hour extra of chatting on only 1 coffee, a mini cinnamon swirl and this sausage roll!
Never before had I talked so much tech on so little caffeine, it was at that point I realised that knowledge, preparation and adrenaline we key to this day.
The EUG EMEA 2017 conference seemed to be a huge success across the 3 days from everything I have seen, the middle day on which I presented was focussed on non-product specific IT related topics. I think the fact I came up against the hot topic of GDPR in my session slots and still had a fairly full room was testament to the fact the nobody knows everything, and everyone wants to know a little more on the subjects of Server and SQL optimisation. The feedback at the time certainly reflects that.
I want to once again thank everyone in the EUG EMEA team for having me, the customers who attended the sessions for their perseverance, great questions and feedback and Epicor for letting me attend and present at fairly short notice. Hopefully this will be the start of a new chapter for me as I look to push on into 2018.