You’re in Ops. You’ve spent years as a founder, as a partner, a change agent, a heavy lifter, an executor, and a mentor. You have your hands in everything and you carry the weight of your organization. But you don’t have to do it alone. You're invited to be part of a small, hand selected group of individuals to join our global retreat and create something big.
You are concerned about recruiting, about staffing, and utilization and forecasting. You want to grow your people and execute for your clients. You keep the lights on and make the whole organization hum. Yet, it’s funny that the role that is so integral to the organization’s success rarely gets the opportunity to pair and collaborate with their peers, the way developers do. The Ops Conf Retreat will help build connections, share insights, and provide a support network for those who share similar goals, have similar values, and tackle the same tough obstacles in our industry.
We will facilitate the Ops Conf retreat as an “unconference”, allowing you flexibility to explore topics of interest, whether they be sales, staffing, organizational growth, adaptive leadership, career development, or whatever else you may bring to the table.
See the proposed schedule for the 2018 retreat below.
In addition to the unconference, we will facilitate a few key sessions to harness the creativity of this group. We’ll discuss better ways to manage stress and become more adaptive problem solvers; capable of creating, innovating, and working quickly under conditions of great uncertainty.
Fly in (Portland most likely) and drive to Kennebunkport. Arrive and unpack in time for our welcome dinner. We'll be exploring the camp ground the first night and having an informal dinner there on site.
Day One: Welcome to Ops-Conf!
We'll spend the morning in facilitation getting to know the various members in the community. Reconnect with old friends and meet new ones before we head out in the afternoon to explore the unique harbor side and ocean views.
Focus: Biggest Mistake and Professional Failures since last year. As is our tradition, we always share the bad ideas before we get to the good ones. And in keeping with the Walkshop, we will arrange for a hike to stretch our legs and explore the new environment together while we unpack these failures. Goose Rocks Beach is both close to our camp and amazing to walk during low tide. Following a day on the shore - we'll head into town for an amazing private dining experience.
Day Two: Storytelling
We have rented out the Vinegar Hill theater for our group for the day.
Together, we will learn some new techniques for crafting a message that both resonates with our audience and really sticks afterwards.
“In Made to Stick, Chip and Dan Heath reveal the anatomy of ideas that stick and explain ways to make ideas stickier, such as applying the human scale principle, using the Velcro Theory of Memory, and creating curiosity gaps. Along the way, we discover that sticky messages of all kinds—from the infamous “kidney theft ring” hoax to a coach’s lessons on sportsmanship to a vision for a new product at Sony—draw their power from the same six traits.”
After learning some new skills, each of us will have the opportunity to tell a story about our business and get feedback from the community.
Day Three: Unconference
Our last day this year will be structured as an Unconference - where topics and discussions will be prioritized on the spot. This will be a “show and tell” format where people can share their new ideas, latest innovations, and really anything that others might benefit and learn from.
Saturday night, we'll conclude with our traditional "formal dinner" - a chance to get dressed up and enjoy a stunning meal together in a truly unique setting.
Travel day. Go home loaded with new ideas and new connections!
The Ops Conf community has served as both support and inspiration for some of the best leaders in the software industry. Together, we have collaborated on new innovations, supported each other through role transitions, and provided advice as companies have grown, changed, and turned over.
"I really appreciate a conference that centers around the consulting industry, which is not the general focus at tech conferences. I was able to collaborate and compare notes with other people in this sector and have been keeping in touch with other attendees ever since. I'm excited to go back for this year!"
"It is an amazing experience to meet with other like minded people working to solve similar problems. I learned so much from each person and laid the foundation for lasting friendships. It was very well done. I look forward to going again."
"OpsConf was a wonderful opportunity to brainstorm with leaders of like minded consultancies, work through business challenges together, and forge bonds that will lead to future collaboration."
"The best part of any conference is the chance to forge strong connections with the people that have walked a similar path to your own. You're lucky to make one of those at any given conference. At OpsConf, I walked away with at least five of them, plus a network of people that I've kept in touch with to talk about successes, challenges, and failures throughout the year."
We will be taking over a summer campground where each person will have their own cabin and solitude. We will be near Goose Rocks Beach in Maine near Kennebunkport. Our unique accommodations and private dining experiences have all been chosen to encourage quiet spaces, a contemplative environment, and a free flowing exchange of ideas. Read more about our location, camp ground, and your cabin.
The private setting has been chosen for its ability to foster collaborative interactions during the retreat. Use this time to break away from your normal setting and interact with others in this group.
As is our tradition with Ops-Conf, we will arrange for private dining experiences, incredible meals made by local chefs. Come hungry for good food and new ideas.