From the Vice President

October 2018

Image of Kaye Churches, wearing a formal blouse and red lipstick. Photo taken at ITx

Kaye Churches

This is the year we felt the fear but did it anyway.

I’m of course talking about ITx – New Zealand’s largest IT focused conference where more than 600 delegates spend 3 days expecting to be wow’ed. This year we were there in our own right, with our own speaker stream, our own full conference keynote speaker and our first ITx Excellence Award. We made our mark.

This didn’t happen overnight but has been a slow burn building on the relationship TechCommNZ has developed with ITP over several years.

One of our most important roles as a professional organisation is to promote our profession and make what we do visible to people who matter. So, this year when we were asked to be all in we said yes. But even with an enthusiastic team and handpicked speakers we were still nervous.

So how did we do? Our goal was to raise the awareness not only of TechCommNZ but also of content, the people who create it, and why it’s important. Measuring our success is difficult but I can say…

  • Our exhibition booth had a steady stream of visitors every day asking questions and entering our competition
  • Our speakers all presented to a full room when there were six other speakers to choose from
  • Our favourite Doug Kim delivered a memorable final day keynote to several hundred delegates that really brought content into the spotlight
  • Steve Moss got the biggest laugh of the night at the ITx Awards dinner when he accepted the inaugural award for the ITx Excellence in Technical Communication.

I think we did ok.

But more than this was our presence, and the enthusiasm of our young team. A big thank you to the team who helped make ITx happen behind the scenes, in the booth, and who bought our brand to life. Thank you, Katie Haggath, Meredith Evans, Shelly Davies, Rob Grover, Peter Nock, and Abhay Chockski, and to Roy for keeping us to a budget.

It’s been a positive but busy year at TechCommNZ.

As always the same people step forward to play a part in our organisation. One of our biggest challenges is to engage our members to become part of us - to help drive their own profession forward, and to contribute their time, energy, and enthusiasm. This is an area we must address so that our committee doesn’t become burnt out and lose their willingness to contribute.

The coming year brings our own conference and the challenges and excitement of bringing our members together. Planning has started and I’m looking forward to organising what will be my last conference for TechCommNZ, and our first in the regions. See you there.