PssstCertain text has been redacted for confidentiality

Behind the walls of the Washington State Convention Center (WSCC), there is a gathering of 20,000 Microsoft technical resources every six months.

TechReady, as it’s called, is an internal-only, blue badge, full-time employee, NO customers, NO vendors, NO partners and NO press event. And unlike every other tech conference across this big, blue marble of ours, there is no Expo Hall full of vendors schilling their wares. It is a safe haven for Microsofties to share new features, new product releases, futures and roadmaps in absolute confidence.

This year at TechReady22 (or “TR22,” as insiders call it), I broke through the defenses and was invited to present my own 75-minute breakout session. How ’bout THEM apples, huh?! Now, I didn’t have unfettered access to all areas or secret sessions; in fact I was required to have an escort–my Co-Presenter–walk me to my session room and then walk me out of the building. Yes, it is that secure and no, it wasn’t that kind of escort. His name is Randy Miller. This is Seattle, not Las Vegas after all.

A New Experience

This was my first TR presenting as a non-blue badge employee. I have been speaking in the WSCC since TR4, back in the days of SoftGrid. This year I presented on “Accelerating Windows Adoption by 90%” to a packed room of Microsoft field roles such as TSP, MCS, EPG, SSP, SMS&P, Public Sector and more. My session brought the field reps through a well-orchestrated, three-step journey to Windows 10 success, which I have blogged about previously.

Three Steps to Windows 10 Success:

  1. Maintain business continuity in the face of user disruption
  2. Accelerate Application migration effort calculation
  3. Approach Corporate Supported Windows 10 pragmatically

Put Your Hands Together

One of the biggest applause generators was when we announced we would provide Citrix AppDNA to the Microsoft field resources for FREE to help their customers move to Windows 10 seamlessly and effortlessly. Previously, we had made this offer available to Citrix Solutions Advisor partners. This is a huge undertaking by Citrix, but we are doing it to help our customers–who are also Microsoft customers–migrate to the newest Windows OS.

You see, instead of these valuable Microsoft consultants installing and testing each app against Windows 10 manually over the course of days, weeks, months and even years, they can turn them through AppDNA and get a detailed report in a fraction of the time. This report clearly shows, in color coding, what applications will take the least, moderate and most effort to move to Windows 10.

Easy peasy, lemon, well … you know the rest.

I am super excited and looking forward to the next TechReady on July 9, 2016.

Pro Tip: If you can’t get an invite to a secret conference like TechReady, try to invite some of the field folk out to a steak lunch ‘n learn. After 3 days of conference food you will find yourself with a full room of key contacts who are “hungry” to hear your value prop.