For me RallyON was one of those – you know what, I am living my dream – moments in life. My favorite town (Boulder) was filled with 150 of our largest and best customers along with 85 expert agile practitioners from our coaching, product and technical account management teams. It was a swarm of agile expertise all gathered to share with each other for the sole purpose of getting smarter and building community. And you know what?

It turned out great! We prepared very well, the whole company came together to support it and all the right people were there. Typical for Colorado, the weather was perfect on day one (see the video below), but snowed on day two. Check out the runners pictured on top of Mount Sanitas in Boulder for our charity run with the white streaks of snow on May 11th! Fortunately, many folks also joined the Yoga class inside and we ended up donating 260 meals to our non-profit partner, Community Food Share, during the corporate challenge month.

Don’t just trust me

Please don’t just trust my words about this being a great conference! Below are a few of the artifacts from the conference including a quick video, the conference community site, links to twitter stream from the conference tag #RallyOn11 and great questions posed to StackExchange. But, the most stunning artifact is that 99% of  of the attendees surveyed said they would attend again and recommend it to another member of their team.

To give you a little taste of the setting and the energy, PLAY the video to hear a collective answer to: WHAT IS AGILE?

If you are interested in what happened at RallyON, view the Twitter archive, join the discussion, download the presentations or read the notes at the RallyOn.Rallydev.com site by clicking on the banner below. To comment or participate, simply login with your Rally username and password or create an account if you don’t have Rally credentials.

A HUGE THANK YOU

The overwhelming success of this two day event could not have happened without tons of help. A huge thank you to:

  • our customers who showed up ready to learn and share – as well as present over 100 open space topics
  • our product, technical account management and coaching teams for kicking day one off with Rally developed content
  • Ken Clyne and Ann Konkler for being a fantastic pair in the master of ceremonies role
  • our partners Accurev and StreamStep for sponsoring the event
  • our internal team RallyOn for nailing the execution of this event
  • Michael Cheveldave from Cognitive Edge for facilitating a track on Cynefin and complex adaptive systems
  • StackExchange for sending Mark and Anna to help us ramp up in that community
  • all the attendees to entered or answered questions at pm.stackexchange.com using the RallyON11 tag

I kicked off the conference by saying this was all about building a strong community. By bringing our best users together with all of our internal agile experts, it was my hope that we could address some of the problems that Jean, Eric and Liz highlighted in late 2009 with their Community of Thinkers post. And, also to run some experiments based on the shortcomings that we highlighted in the #10yrsagile celebration conference and my post. Based on feedback, usage of the RallyON community site and the excitement from the show, I think we got a community snowball rolling toward the crest of the hill.

Please let us know how you thought we did, either physically or virtually, at the conference, and share your ideas for how we can continue building our community.

Ryan Martens is CTO/Founder of Rally and on the way to be the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Unreasonable Institue this summer in Boulder –  See the Institutes 2011 FellowsWatch the intro video to the Institute .

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