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While there are plenty of ways to learn about IT and cloud services online, there are few things more inspiring than attending one of the biggest conferences that the industry has to offer. NexGen is a huge end-of-year event, designed to inspire and inform tech innovators and employees from across the globe. It's presented each year by the Channel Company, and NexGen honors some of the most significant solution providers that the communication, cloud, AI, and IoT spaces (among others) have to offer.
We're thrilled to be visiting NexGen 2018 this year to get our fill of all the latest achievements and inspirational speeches from the IT industry. Here, we're going to tell you a thing or two about what you can expect from the most recent NexGen conference and introduce you to the sessions and experiences that we're most looking forward to!
Buckle up for the ultimate end-of-year event.
Is the NexGen 2018 Conference Right for You?
As mentioned above, the NexGen conference is an IT event explicitly designed for Managed Service Providers and channel partners in the industry. If you're a vendor, or a partner looking for a new solution to sell this year, then you're sure to learn a thing or two at this fantastic 3-day event. Additionally, the conference is open to everyone on the 10th and 11th of December, so it's great if you have a passion for the IT space too!
Most of the time, the MSPs and channel partners that gather at NexGen use the forum as an opportunity to network with peers, stay ahead of the latest industry trends, and potentially engage in new strategies. Since there are plenty of keynotes and speaker sessions from industry leaders too, it's a great way to expand your knowledge of the tech space.
This year, the NexGen conference will run at the Hilton Anaheim in California, between the 9th and 11th of December. If you happen to be present during the December 11th open day, you can enter to win 2 tickets for the Los Angeles Rams vs. Philadelphia Eagles game on December the 16th too.
Though the IT focus always remains strong at NexGen, there are different themes from one year to the next. This year, the subject is "Building a NexGen Portfolio of Managed Services," and the topics being explored include:
- IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS trends
- Customer success and experience
- Managed Services opportunities for Solution Providers
- The evolution of the MSP model
- How AI, IoT, and Blockchain are re-defining the industry
- Next-gen strategies for leaders
- MSP strategies for emerging tech
- Customer loyalty in the cloud era
- Peer best practices and recurring revenue success storie
- Picking the right PSA tools
- Hiring the right talent for Next-level performance
- New Managed Services solutions
Here are the major sessions we're looking forward to this year.
1. Lincoln Murphy: Customer Success
Between 9:10 am and 9:55 am on Tuesday the 11th of December, Lincoln Murphy, the former pro-wrestler, author and expert customer success consultant will take to the stage at NexGen. This action-packed session is sure to be a knock-out, as it will cover topics like how today's most intuitive companies are growing recurring revenue and reduce churn.
In his session, Murphy plans to cover the importance of linking business success to customer success in the age of CX and experience. The keynote is sure to include a quote or two from Murphy's book "Customer Success," and we're excited to see where Lincoln takes the critical discussion of business relationships and customer management.
In a prelude to his session, Murphy has noted that he will be talking about the world "before cloud" and the changing nature of customer service in a time where your customers have access to more options than ever before. According to Lincoln, the philosophy of customer success is now permeating the boardroom and changing the way that CEOs plan for the future of their business.
2. Ian Kahn: AI, Blockchain & IoT
The session: "AI, Blockchain and IoT - the Emerging Tech Trifecta" is sure to be an exciting way to start your NexGen experience. Hosted by Ian Kahn, a technology futurist, and well-respected author, the session is set to run between 1:30 pm and 2:15 pm on Sunday the 9th of December. Make sure you check it out if you're an early bird with access to the entire NexGen event.
Ian Kahn is a world-renowned technology expert, with a background that includes TEDx talks, CNN features, and Forbes contributions. During this session, you'll learn about three of the most disruptive technologies changing the future as we know it, in everything from business, to everyday life. Ian will discuss the transformative potential of IoT, AI and blockchain, and how it will force companies to rethink the partnerships they need to manage to serve the customers of the future.
Kahn believes that by the time we reach 2025, the communication landscape as we know it may have changed drastically, removing the need for cell phones. Even more importantly, Ian notes that by the time we reach 2045, there's a possibility that we may have reached "singularity" in the artificial intelligence space.
This session is one to watch.
3. Nancy Giordano: Navigating the Big Shift
Have you ever heard of the concept of "Audacious Leadering"? Well, you're about to. On Monday the 10th of December, Nancy Giordano, the CEO of "Play Big," will be taking to the state with her discussion of leadership in the digital world, and what today's companies need to do to stay ahead of the curve.
Nancy Giordano is a dynamic and highly charismatic speaker known for helping visionary companies and enterprises transform to adapt to the latest trends and demands of the digital world. She built her career through some of the most influential ad agencies in Chicago, New York, and LA, and now she's bringing her insights to the NexGen stage. During the "Navigating the Big Shift" session, Nancy will introduce the case for "Audacious leadering." Nancy believes that anyone aspiring to the executive suite today needs to be open to taking part in radical solutions that involve new ways of thinking and acting.
As we continue to see innovations around the world changing the way that consumers behave, and businesses evolve, it's safe to say that this will be a valuable session to anyone interested in digital transformation.
4. Mike Diamond: The State of Cloud in the B2B Market
NexGen is known for it's fantastic "Executive sessions." These unique sessions offer an insight into various parts of the technology world through quick thirty-minute moments with industry leaders. The Executive Session hosted by Mike Diamond, Group Director for B2B technology for NPD, is called "The State of Cloud in the B2B Market".
Though cloud is becoming more of a standard part of the business environment today, there's still a transformational period that many companies are going through - particularly in the mid-sized to large enterprise space. Running between 2:00 and 2:30 pm on the 10th of December, the State of Cloud session will discuss how various B2B companies are now gravitating towards the cloud, and the power of managed services delivered by reliable channel partners.
Michael Diamond is the NPD Group's director of industry analysis for B2B, with a strong history in technology and channel selling. Diamond spends most of his professional time identifying emerging trends in the IT industry, so we're interested to see what he has to say in his session. The speech will cover various key areas of growth in the cloud environment and discuss which industries need to make a move in their digital transformation campaigns.
5. Bonnie Hagemann: Preparing Leadership for the Future
Finally, you'll notice that leadership is a big theme at NexGen this year. After all, in a transformative time like this, great leadership is key to a successful business evolution. As we enter the fourth industrial revolution, companies will need leaders that can inspire, engage and support their teams in a somewhat unpredictable era of cloud, IoT, artificial intelligence and more.
Bonnie Hagemann, the CEO of Executive Development Associates, will be hosting an executive session between 12:05 and 12:35 pm on Monday the 10th of December, which discusses how organisations can "prepare" their leadership for the future. According to Bonnie, companies can't simply take the leaders of yesterday and put them in charge of the workforce of the future.
In this sure-to-be inspirational session, Hagemann will share some of the major leadership trends that leading companies around the world have discovered with innovative research papers. Throughout the speech, you'll learn what you can do to make sure that your company is an exciting and attractive place for innovators to work, and you'll also discover some critical tips for making sure that the workforce and your leadership suite are prepared for the future.
The NexGen Expo and Closing Ceremonies
Once you've finished planning out the sessions that you must-see at this year's NexGen event, don't forget to leave plenty of time aside so that you can peruse the Expo hall too! After all, NexGen isn't just a technology conference; it's also a place where you can try and explore some of the latest innovations in the market for yourself.
Prepare for a fantastic opportunity to play with innovative communication software, AI solutions, IoT systems and countless pieces of hardware designed to enhance your business and improve your selling strategy. For MSPs, it's a virtual candy land of incredible things to invest in if you've been looking for a way to upgrade your own business.
To get an idea of some of the items you're likely to see at the Expo, the best thing you can do is check out the NexGen sponsors for 2018. There are a lot of them! But some of the names we think you should be keeping an eye out for include:
- AT&T Business
- ADT Cyber Security
Make sure that you bring your notebook with you, so you can set up some potential meetings with anyone you might want to partner with in 2019. NexGen is the perfect place to add some extra power to your sales strategy in time for the new year.
We also recommend that you stick around for the closing ceremonies on the 11th of December too. There are bound to be some exciting things to do and see during the last day, including prize announcements for the #NGC18 giveaway and of course, the Xcellence awards ceremony.
Will We See You at NexGen?
If you're looking for a thrilling place where you can learn more about the future of technology and the innovative trends that are changing the marketplace today, then you can't afford to miss NexGen.
Did we mention that it's completely free to sign up to the conference as a general attendee? You can put your name down as an attendee now and start picking the sessions that you want to go to in no-time. Just remember that specific sessions will only be open to people with specific tickets, so if you want to see something special, you'll need to plan in advance.
We're looking forward to another educational year at NexGen, followed by a thrilling start to 2019!
If you want to learn more about what you can do to launch your new year on the right track, get in touch with the team here at Coolhead Tech today! We'll be happy to help!