I attended a half day seminar offered to IT leaders in Vancouver today by Microsoft Canada. Essentially, this was the launch of Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2 and Exchange Server 2010 to the Vancouver market. There were about 100 people in attendance.
Here is my Twitter stream from the session today … http://twitter.com/#search?q=leodesousa msft
The day began with an engaging keynote by Jim Carroll – Futurist, Trends & Innovation Expert. Jim spoke laid out themes of :
- Run the business
- Grow the business
- Transform the business
Next, Jim provided examples from his consulting engagements to highlight the themes. One of Jim’s quotes was “Success comes to those who evolve.” Another quote, “Many kids going to elementary school will have careers in fields that don’t exist today. Think about a “location intelligence” professional.” With the huge growth of spatially related data, there is a real need for people skilled in location intelligence.
Jim also talked about the “new economy” typified by:
- A relentless focus on growth – changes in construction mgmt focused on green sustainable initiatives
- Speed to change product lifecycles – auto makers who can retool production lines in 10 days vs 10 months
- Ability to speed up business cycles – new video games maximize sales in the first 4-5 days
The rest of the morning was Microsoft folks building on Jim’s themes and relating them to the “New Efficiency” slogan. Microsoft’s proposal is that the 3 following things make up the “new efficiency”.
- Run the business = create cost savings
- Grow the business = increase productivity
- Transform the business = ability to innovate
Microsoft also played on the old saying of “Do more with less” by pushing “With less, do more”. A bit too much marketing for me.
One last factoid that struck me was Microsoft’s investment in research. Microsoft spends $9.5 billion USD on R&D annually – that is more than most company’s value!
My big ask would be that Microsoft fully adopt open standards and focus on reducing IT complexity in the technologies they provide the market. Overall, a valuable morning with good information and a bonus that I got to catch up with my good friend @whitebill.