A whole new experience
When I heard about the South Coast Summit 2021 volunteering I signed up immediately. Having volunteered previously for the Scottish Summit, I knew how much fun it could be. However, I suspected this might be a whole new experience and I was not disappointed!
Many of the volunteers were also speaking and had been at the ‘speakers dinner’ the previous evening. But a few bleary eyes were quickly dispelled by a combination of caffeine and hydration, and we were soon raring to go. I had been allocated to the main reception point, and was really pleased to see some familiar faced among the volunteers as well as the attendees.
Volunteering at events is a great way to get to know people. The air is full of excitement, and people are always happy to see you, especially if you have a lanyard and any amount of ‘swag’! I was delighted to welcome the attendees, many of whom were heroes of mine from the Power Platform community.
Lending a hand
The volunteering itself is normally very straightforward. You typically just need to lend a hand to whatever needs to be done at the time. This could be giving directions to sessions and rooms, or handing out lanyards. It’s always helpful to know where the nearest loos are, and where someone can get a coffee or charge a phone.
Sponsors often provide items of swag, and you may need to hand out food/drink tokens. Often the trickiest part of the day is identifying the speakers among the thousands of attendees. They will need to be directed toward their sign in and their shirts!
My prior summit experience had been limited to Glasgow in chilly February. So it was absolutely lovely to be enjoying the late summer sunshine in Southampton. The organisers had picked a beautiful venue, well served by local hotels.
Many of the speakers and attendees were staying onsite in the Hilton. My budget not extending that far, I had opted for the Holiday Inn a short walk away. Both hotels were great and I have already booked for next year!
It’s really easy to get involved in D365 and Power Platform community events. Generally a call will go out via LinkedIn and Twitter. From there you normally just have to fill in a form and you’re off! The amount of time you put in is normally completely up to you.
If you are new to the community or even someone who has been attending events for a while, I would recommend getting involved. It brings a whole other dimension, and you get to know so many lovely people. It is wonderful to feel like you are a part of the event, and to be giving something back. And who knows where it could lead!