I must say that any place where being an “airhead” is a good thing is probably going to get my attention! At Aruba’s Atmosphere event, the airheads (Aruba user-community members) are what it’s all about. It’s easy to dismiss such terminology as just an amusing collective name except for two simple facts: first, there’s a lot of them….tens of thousands globally with plenty of them milling around the Mandalay Bay; and second the flip side to such a name cannot obscure the “raving fan” aspect that seems to permeate this company and its culture. Yes, I’m well aware that most attendees were actually Aruba customers, but the event retained the feel of a sales kick off (you know, the “we’re all in this together” type of atmosphere).
I attended with my ESG colleague Bob Laliberte, and as is our wont at such events, we pulled together a video to give you an overview of what we learned. Perhaps we can’t quite convey the Harley Davidson/Apple type of user enthusiasm, but at least in 7 minutes you’ll get a quick run-down of the main news and our commentary.
Bob’s expert blog on the event has additional details and can be found here. I won’t repeat his summary. What I will say is that the main guest speaker on Day 1 was B Joseph Pine, one of the authors of (amongst much else) “The Experience Economy” – and I imagine that future editions of that book might include the contemporary Aruba as an example: after all, “Intelligent Edge” (a big part of the preaching at Atmosphere) is not just something that vendors such as Aruba want to support and supply; it is also something they want to have over the competition! This event laid out a compelling case for Aruba’s competence, completeness, and growing market relevance.