The summer is nearly over, and conference season is getting into full swing. Take it from a veteran: one conference you don’t want to miss is NetApp Insight. I’ve been to many conferences that cover lots of different technologies, but for me, Insight is different. It’s not just a technology event—it’s been instrumental in helping me develop my career.
I’ve attended Insight for the past seven years, and I’m not planning on ditching that trend any time soon! Here are my top three reasons for why I make Insight my conference priority every year.
Expand Your Knowledge
Since I started coming to Insight in 2010, technology has changed dramatically. But NetApp has never stood still. Every year I return to Insight to find out about all the new and exciting technologies that NetApp is developing and investing in. From the early days of Data ONTAP 7-Mode to the cloud and beyond, NetApp’s evolving portfolio never disappoints.
This year, I am really looking forward to hearing about developments in the cloud portfolio and the next-generation data centre. NetApp has taken big leaps forward over the last two years in developing their portfolio and taking a strong position in these markets, and I can’t wait to hear what else is on the horizon.
If you are attending Insight, make sure that you make it for the general sessions. I am really excited about this year’s guest speaker. As a bit of a space enthusiast, I can’t wait to hear from Adam Steltzner, an aerospace engineer for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Hearing about the technologies that helped make the Mars rover missions successful is something you won’t want to miss.
While you’re filling out your schedule, you might want to think about attending our NetApp A-Team panel session. It’s a great chance to hear from partners and customers about their experiences working with NetApp. And it’s hosted by yours truly…for what it’s worth.
Education is a huge part of why I attend Insight. NetApp University provides you with all the tools and resources you need to get certified whilst you’re there. You can take all the tests you want—for free—and if you don’t pass, you can retake them the next day. It’s a great opportunity to expand your professional skillset and to demonstrate to your employer that you’re an expert in your field (and that Insight is worth more to them than a week on the town with your industry mates).
Although trying to fit certifications into your already packed Insight agenda isn’t everyone’s priority, I urge you to make the time. Gaining certifications at Insight each year has enabled me to develop my career and increase the value that I provide to my customers and to the company that I work for.
Expand your Network
Everyone who knows me also knows that I am not one to shy away from a good networking event (aka the bar). Insight is a great way to meet people from across the industry, but it’s not all about the parties. These networking events really do make a difference.
You never know who you’re going to meet on the show floor. One minute it’s a guy you attended a training course with five years ago and you’re sneakily trying to read his badge to remember his name. Next, you meet the founder of NetApp strolling around and ask him for a quick selfie.
And, of course, you get to meet the NetApp A-Team at these events. I have been lucky enough to be a member of this group for the past two years, and I can say with confidence that if there’s a party happening, you can bet the A-Team is not far away. If you are in Vegas or Berlin (or both!) this year, I urge you to go grab one of us if you see us walking around the show floor, or attend the A-Team session and ask us why we advocate for NetApp.
So, if you’re asking yourself, “Is attending Insight worthwhile?” I hope I’ve helped you come to a conclusion. In my opinion, not only is it worthwhile, it’s an essential part of developing your IT career, both technically and professionally.
To find out more, go to NetApp-Insight.com