LotusLive at the Lotus Leadership Alliance (LoLA)

Last week the annual Lotus Leadership Alliance 2009 conference was held in Cambridge, MA. Top Lotus customers, top Lotus business partners and the IBM/Lotus team met each other for a couple of days. Both Stuart and I were invited on behalf of our companies – Stuart couldn’t make it, but I was very pleased that I was around!
In my opinion, it was a very good conference for all parties.

Discussing LotusLive with a very large group will always be a challenge, however because of the great interest of all parties the outcome was very positive.

Because the conference was under NDA, a lot of details can not be shared – you will have to wait until LotusLive announcements in this fall or till Lotusphere 2010.

The real challenge for all parties, customers, business partners and IBM will be what Lotus Collaboration functions will be delivered/needed on-premise and what functions will be delivered/needed in the cloud.

Some features you would like to see in the same way in the on-premise as in the cloud world. On the other hand some features have little or no value on-premise and great value in the cloud (and visa versa).

We will get great new features in the coming releases in the next few months – and we’ll cover them on this blog!

But beside features, the other real challenge is changing your habits.

  • I came back with 30 new business cards, which was not necessary because all participants have access to LotusLive and connecting online is so much easier than physical exchange of business cards
  • Several new initiatives have started, and only a few by the use of LotusLive Activities. Most of new initiatives are started by an e-mail (I am guilty too)
  • Evaluation forms were still on paper, despite LotusLive having a great feature for this – LotusLive Forms.

But there are improvements too

  • 2 days after the conference, I am connected to 10 new people I met in LotusLive (without having their business cards on paper, or receiving e-mails)
  • I have participated in 10 LotusLive Sametime instant messages about LoLA with other LotusLive members (even while I was waiting at the airport)
  • This blog entry is shared with Stuart in LotusLive Files, meaning upload/download history, comments are shared in the cloud.

Until this conference I had little to no interest in the Meeting/Event part of LotusLive as well as in the Notes/iNotes part of LotusLive. This has changed because of the integration I have seen, meaning you will hear more about this in this blog soon.

Stuart McIntyre is a Senior Strategist at Fostering Community Limited. He curates a number of product-focused news sites, is a lapsed podcaster, founded the Social Connections user group and regularly speaks at conferences and events. This blog represents his own slightly-eccentric and usually-controversial opinions!