Instead of being in the conference, I manned our sponsor table the whole time. Going from sitting all day to standing all day is a big change! I let team members experience GoRuCo since it was their first time. Also, it was my first time at the sponsor table, so I focused on being a great sponsor.
Being at the sponsor table all day is different than being in the conference. The attendees come in waves, scheduled with preset break intervals, so the rhythm was predictable.
The nice thing was that we always got a headstart on important things, like coffee, lunch, and ice cream! That itself worth the price of manning the table all day!
During periods of no attendees, I got to spend time with my own coworkers at my table, some I don’t interact with heavily since they’re on a different team. So it was refreshing to talk about work, but outside of work. It’s like having a long lunch with them and you don’t have to worry about going back to the office or someone waiting for your table. It’s relaxing way to spend time with coworkers you don’t much time with.
Meeting other event sponsors was interesting. Everyone has a different motivation for being a sponsor. We were looking to hire. Some were the same, others were looking for customers.
Tip: If you are a job seeker come to sponsor tables during talks. You will have full attention of the sponsor AND the room will be quiet! You’ll have more time presenting yourself because there’s less competition!
Swag hunters mentioned to us that we had the best swag. Things we gave away:
- Leather-bound notebook (this was the big hit!)
- Paper-bound notebook
- Long sleeved T-shirts (M & L sized)
- RFID protecting card sleeve
Tip: Come early for your choice of swag. Early in the day, is when swag is most available.
Tip: If there’s swag you want more of, come back to the table later in the event, sponsors will be more than happy to give you extras than pack up stuff to take back.
As an event sponsor, having all equipment there before hand is essential. A table cover makes great impression and is easy to set up. We did have to work with conference organizers to track down a box shipped earlier that we didn’t get.
Tip: Have tracking IDs of all boxes sent to the event. If you are missing a box, this will help conference organizers to track it easily. They are already super busy with everything else out and looking for a “box” makes things harder.
One of the cooler highlights was when I saw the name: “Wayne Seguin” come across the table… All of the sudden, my “ruby sense” started tingling… why is this name significant in Ruby…
So I had to ask the person: “You are an important person in the Ruby community… but I can’t remember why. What do you do?”
He responded: “I write rvm!”
Yes! That makes so much sense. I love using RVM to manage my Ruby versions, even though I use the other Ruby manager at work, which is totally against my will. Really! Curse you HaskellAndChill! /shakesfist
Wayne was really cool and I totally fanboy-ed and got a photo with him:
One of the first shocks of GoRuCo this year was one that happened right outside of the conference. I met Veekas and he said that this year’s GoRuCo would be the last.
WHY??? It’s only my second one!!!
I talked with Luke Melia more and I understand, all good things must come to an end. Honestly, this might be a good thing since this vacancy allows a new team a new opportunity to take charge and make a new conference.
I have faith the next incarnation of GoRuCo will be as good and eventually better than GoRuCo.
No Guts, No Boat Party!
Well, from what I understand, the conference after party was not on a boat this year. :-( Which is not why I didn’t go, but I also have a new addition to my family this year. As my collegue put it: I don’t want to burn too much husband equity, so I left before the end of the conference.
This year’s GoRuCo was bittersweet as it is the last one. At the same time, I know the Ruby NYC community will find a way to fill this vacancy provided by GoRuCo.
The experience of being a sponsor at GoRuCo is good a contrast from being an attendee. I got to spend time with other sponsors and meet attendees who wanted to learn more about us and .
I’m really happy to be able to contribute back to the Ruby NYC community through GoRuCo.