Meeting 1 - South Hants IT group

29 June 2018

So I would judge last night’s inaugural session as a success, despite relatively low attendance. As chair I take full responsibility for organising a business meeting which directly overlapped with an England game, and my lesson is learnt.

That said, I am even more grateful to the people who came, and from our small but perfectly formed group of about 8 people we managed to get some healthy debate around:

  • A FinTech CTO’s views on the market
  • What is Bitcoin mining and whether its worth doing
  • AWS vs Azure, who comes out on top
  • The social impacts of mobile dating apps on relationships (including live demo)
  • The objective of the group is to gather like minded technology people in an informal setting to build relationships. Mission accomplished.

Whereas this first meeting tended to congregate around a number of my mates, most of them did not know each other and you could see relationships building without any real facilitation by me. I’d like to think this will continue as the group evolves and grows. The broader group now stands at about 45 members, across IT departments within Clients; representatives from the Channel (small and large); and Vendors across multiple sectors. I want to get to 100.

I think the interesting success around this was there is no “agenda”. I’m not trying to sell anyone anything, and no-one in the group last night was either. I genuinely believe by maintaining this non-commercial, non-sales based, lack of any preformed unwritten agenda, the group will operate most effectively. People are coming for two reasons – they want to build a network of people who can help them AND they want to participate in a network of people who they can help.

The group name was raised, and I think it was discussed that extending the descriptor to be South Hants IT Professional Outreach Organisation could be a possibility but warranted further debate. Weirdly, both acronym URL’s are available if we wanted to take it to the next professional branding level and launch our own website.

It was also agreed that the next session would have a short, non salesy discussion around Artificial Intelligence. I think it was generally agreed that few people know much about it, and getting into a debate about its merits and downsides, some of the vendors who are playing in the space etc would build people’s knowledge.

So my social experiment looks like it might pay off, and lets hope we can expand the membership to everyone’s benefit over the coming months. Next meeting is pencilled in for the Thursday 13th September 2018, 6pm-7pm meeting then drinks at the Parsons after that. If you are interested in coming along, please let me know (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

From small acorns......

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