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Getting Started with Leancamp

Leancamp is an open space which means that you help create the day. It’s an opportunity for you to contribute, share and ask others for help, advice and guidance. You’ll have a role in progressing entrepreneurial approaches for everyone.

Previous Leancamp attendees have told us they value a mix of backgrounds sharing with each other. This has helped people discover and learn from others’ approaches. Leancamp brings together Lean-, Agile- and Design-led businesses to find solutions to the challenges we currently face.

What’s the schedule?

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There will be plenty of these opportunities to explore. Leancamp will run parallel half-hour sessions in different rooms throughout the day. We have some of those planned, and would like to give you the opportunity to contribute your own. If you’ve got a topic that you’d like to share with others then feel free to prepare a short presentation to kick start a discussion. Session rooms range from 10-30 person workshop rooms but we’ll have lecture-style rooms for bigger sessions too. It’ll be an exciting event and a friendly, relaxed atmosphere. There will also be plenty of spaces for impromptu conversations.

We will go through a planning session at the start of the day where anyone can propose and promote a topic in any of the available sessions.

To make the most of this opportunity, you might want to get prepared.

To help get the discussions going and give you an idea of what topics people might be interested in, we’ve created a Uservoice forum. There, you will see session ideas from previous Leancamps, and you can make suggestions. These will evolve over as Leancamp approaches, so check in frequently. It’s all about evolving discussions about the sessions. Sessions of all sizes are welcome. Follow @leanconf on Twitter to stay up to date on the latest session discussions.

You could also look through the invited speakers and other participants to get a feel for the expertise at the event, especially from the people who you are less familiar to you.

What do you want to learn? Here’s how to get feedback on your session ideas

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If you’d like to get feedback on a possible session before the day, you can add a proposal. Actually, we encourage that you make multiple proposals on specific topics or variations. This will help give you feedback from other participants. There’s no selection or proposal process in advance – at the start of the day, we will create the agenda based on what you propose then.

To get the best feedback on a possible sessions it’s a good idea to include the following on the Uservoice forum:

In the title:

  • An indication if you’d like to host or lead the session.
  • An indication if you’re inviting others to respond to a query.Here are some template titles that might help you get started:
    How I did ________ to achieve _______
    I’m doing ________ but having trouble with ________
    This is all about helping ______ learn ________
    Let’s brainstorm about how to _________ better.
    Ask a _______: How can/do I __________?
    I tried ______ and it didn’t work!
    Using ________ for ________ (instead of ________ )

To give people a better understanding of your session’s topic, try to include this information in the description:

  • Your Twitter handle or a way to contact you.
  • Your context: stage, customers, industry – in one or two sentences
  • Something specific and tangible in your situation for others to identify with, so that others with similar problems can join, and people can be specific and actionable in their contributions.
  • The challenge you face now
  • Some insight into what you’ve tried
  • What the format of the session will be – show & tell, fishbowl discussion, roundtable, post up, etc. Learn about some different formats here.

Uservoice Tips

Commenting really helps. Commenting, asking questions and joining the discussion will help make the sessions clearer, and help th e session planner connect with everyone in advance.

Say what you need in bullet points. If you need people with specific backgrounds, or facilitators, or anyone else to make the ses sion work, say so explicitly in the description. It’s up to you to get the resources you need, but over the week, we’ll also try to connect your session idea to relevant people.

Niche sessions are valuable. Lots of the best sessions are small, and we’ll have space on the day for sessions of all sizes. If your session doesn’t get loads of votes, don’t worry!

Take the conversation to Twitter, Facebook and Linked In. It’s up to you to take responsibility for your session, so reach out to people to expand the conversation. Sharing where you are and what you’ve tried – and asking questions – will get the conversation started. Check in to answer any comments and questions regularly, and tweet out when you do.

Get feedback and validation before getting too involved with the session prep!
If you have an idea, get it in front of people now, so you get early feedback. This will also help connect you to the resources you need early. If you’re unsure about something, get it out there and ask for feedback.

Your responsibilities

Leancamp is what you make it. If you’d like to propose a session then you’ll have a few responsibilities:

  1. You’ll need to present it to everyone at the beginning of the day, just 20-30 seconds to introduce yourself and let people know about your session.
  2. You’ll need to start off the session. Even for discussion sessions, you’ll probably want to have a 2- to 5-minute intro prepared to get the discussion framed quickly around something specific, and the momentum going. Then everyone can really jump in. Remember, sessions are only half an hour!

As always, if you have any questions, please tweet @leanconf or email ben@leanconf.co.uk.

Looking forward to seeing you there and on Uservoice!