Unconference day Rotterdam

On the day before the conference, there was also an official pre-conference on the side, called “Unconference”. The idea of this, we can surely say, the great workshop was to get the participants of the Lean Innovation Summit to get to know each other before the conference. To share experiences and knowledge with their peers in a different, informal atmosphere on Lean and StartUp. This event took place in the beautiful CIC area, Venture Cafe, located next to the Rotterdam train station.

The organizers were: Forty, Firmhouse and Emerce

Above all, what is “Uncoference”?

It is an “open agenda” workshop where participants determine what will be discussed and when it will be discussed. After the presentation of each topic by the candidate who would hold the workshop, participants vote on which topics will be included in the agenda.

Parallel workshops were held in 5 different conference rooms, with participants choosing where they wanted to join, depending on whether they wanted to contribute with their expertise or want to learn more about the topic of the agenda.

Prior to the start, the organizers worked together with the participants in order to make the „rules“ they would follow during the day:

– “Two-foot law” – go where you can contribute or learn
– Meet them where they are, not where you want them to be
– Be inclusive, the people in the workshop are real people
– Be clear and loud only when you speak in front of everyone
– Shares notes because ideas only have value when they are shared and realized

The workshops were really intense and lasted for half an hour each. There were two short breaks of 5 minutes between the workshops (enough for participants to reorganize) and a half-hour break (for refreshments with sandwiches and sweets prepared by the hosts).

The workshops were mostly on a „round table“ basis, where everyone discussed the proposed topic together. Everyone at the workshop was able to share their knowledge or seek specific help for their challenges at work.

All the workshops were well attended and interesting and we will mention only some of them here.

Brant Cooper, from the United States, talked about measuring tools for how „close“ we really are to the users. He presented a process of 7 activities to guide the user from the moment he became aware that our product exists until the stage when the user is a passionate promoter of our product.

Siemen introduced us to his company that grows mushrooms on coffee waste. He made a fascinating statement that only 1% of the crude product is used to make coffee drinks and the rest is thrown away. He found a way to use that waste as a suitable soil for growing types of mushrooms that are cut.

Whether everything can be done according to the subscription model, tried to be answered by people from „Firmhouse“ who presented the good and bad model of the subscription system.

“What if we put the internet in there?” was the name of quite an interesting workshop run by Tracy Lorring with the help of her colleague Louise Fuglsang. Internet usage in any branch of industry, production or service.

After the workshops, the organizers thanked all the participants and invited all the people who participated in the organization of this pre-conference event to join them on the stage.

The organizers also thanked the participants for the great energy and desire for learning something, but also to share their experience with other people. He also invited everyone to attend the central event that took place the next day, the „Lean Innovation Summit“.

Afterward, participants continued their informal socializing and chat with light dinner and refreshments.

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