2014 brought about many great adventures, one of which was fulfilling the bucket list item of attending SXSW. SXSW is one of the largest festivals that takes place in Austin, Texas every March. It has grown to be a massive event focusing on Film, Interactive and Music.
Each crowd has their own defined personality type and one would say that I was hanging with all of the “nerds.” They are good people and some of the smartest that you would ever meet. It was a great event of learning, networking and discovering.
There were many great sessions that I really enjoyed. I saw a few really good ones around sports marketing, app creation, enhancing the creative process, internet security and much more. Some of my favorites featured Brian Wong, Tim Ferris, Edward Snowden and many others. There are many controversies around Edward Snowden and while I don’t agree with all his actions, I did really enjoy this session. Of course, amid all the controversy, he was only there via video stream.
This is one event for great networking. It was especially one since I was part of a company that had global impact. Many key people from around the world came together in Austin to mingle and learn together. I had worked with many of the team previously, but this was the first time that we really got to spend significant time together. Friendships and enhanced working relationships were enhanced in the time together.
One night, the Detroit team jumped into a car and headed south. Our taste buds took us to Driftwood, Texas to enjoy some well renown BBQ. The food was AMAZING, but one of my favorite memories of that adventure was the pure excitement in our general manager, Andy Schueneman. He had an uncompromising smile that lasted from the parking lot, through dinner and all the way back to Austin.
The discovery together was truly amazing and one of many great times down there.
A final piece that I continue to relive was one that I didn’t get to see in person, but it did take place in my time down there. The Keith Urban iTunes Music Festival concert was incredible. You can check it out here: