I've typed, deleted, and started a few times now, so now I'm just typing and see what comes out. I wanted to share my thoughts on the Tableau Conference-ish. First, the events team did an amazing job with creating this virtual event. It set the standard to create as much of a TC experience as possible--and in pretty short order.
The watch parties hosted by Kevin Flerlage were a great way to facilitate connection, which is hard to replace when going from in person to virtual. It wasn't the same by any means, but it was enough to still feel that connection.
There were two things that really bummed me out with this conference being virtual;
1. Not podcasting with my podcasting partner, Matt Francis.
2. Not seeing my friends and going to lunch and catching up, or creating new opportunities.
For me, it was tough to have the content broadcast in different regions (although I totally get it), because it's a lot to ask my UK friends to stay up to watch or stay connected (though some did it! It also meant that I couldn't podcast with Matt after conference each day.
The biggest thing that stood out for me is a feeling. I always share the story about how in 2013, I felt this spark and started becoming an active member of the Tableau community (I was a featured author, blogged monthly, asked Andy Kriebel why he didn't use Gas Buddy's brand colors for his viz, and so much more).
That contribution has changed over the years. Instead of blogging it switched to podcasting, founding and hosting Tableau Fringe Festivals, and this year, #datafamcommunityjams.
But this year, I felt different. In addition to being able to relax at home, I also felt different because of a couple of things...
I had the opportunity to have a fireside chat with Francois Ajenstat and the podcast's community awards, The Vizzies, were part of the main schedule in the US. It was so amazing to see the reactions of people who won!
I was invited to participate in an accessibility working group for data visualization. This was a huge deal for me, because I felt more like a connector and a platform provider, than a resource, and as a result, I approached conference differently.
I'm not sure whether it was me being able to relax and watch some sessions, a great Braindate on accessibility, or seeing that what I'm really good at is now a role that I could actually rock at, or being able to host a little Data Night In party with world renowned DJ Skemaddox, but I felt this spark to show up a little more (and not worry about the amazing work and all the projects that people put out what seems like 24 hours a day when I can't and won't do that). That feeling is amazing.
And that is a great way to celebrate my 10th US Tableau Conference. 🥳
Helping people and organizations begin their data visualization and Tableau journey. I'm a fan of training, Tableau, data viz, my kids, cupcakes, and karate.