Lightning Talks are in. First impressions and next steps.

So the Lightning Talk entries are in…

Lighting Strike Boston Harbor Photo by Matthew West in Boston Herald

I try to make a point on NOT looking at them as they come in as they are a HUGE distraction.

And then we start to go through them all…

The Lightning Talks provoke a combination of guffaws, ‘Aha’ moments, giggles, sighs of disbelief (did Frank Slickman┬áreally submit a powerpoint of a sales presentation, again?) and OMG I hadn’t thought of that. Some make us a bit teary. Lots of them teach us something practical. Others just make us think in ways that surprise us. Sometimes to be honest, we get a sense that someone is on to something but just hasn’t really thought it through and we have to make a judgement as to whether they will have thought it through and put something into a format that will work on the day, emails from PR agencies offering the CEO of one or two companies we haven’t heard of to talk about a subject of our choice on the Lightning Talk Panels (this happens a lot – please read this if you want an indication of how to submit a good speaking proposal, not just for BoS, but for anywhere else too).

There are several dozen to think about and now we have to make some tough decisions.

Here’s what happens next. The team here will go through the entries to produce a manageable shortlist that we can circulate to a small number of advisers, BoS speakers, and one art student (Neil Davidson) to get their opinions on the selection that will be most appropriate for the Business of Software Community and the Conference. It is not an easy task, believe us, and it is clear that a lot of people have put a huge amount of time, thought, effort and care into preparing their talks. (Others, not so much, when a submission consists of a note along the lines of, “It’s only worth me attending a conference if I get to speak to share my trademarked lead-generation/sales process”, or whatever it is unlikely to make the cut).

The one thing we do know, it’s going to be a very tough job this year to select the speakers, the quality of submissions has been extraordinary. Thank you to everyone who has contributed. We will come back to you all as soon as possible.

As an extra incentive to us to get this done ASAP, we will keep the Early Bird rate that runs out today at the same level until we revert. I hope this will be less than a week.

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