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Symposium 2010 Overview

Symposium San Jose – 2010 Executive Overview

May 3, 2010 - May 6, 2010
The Doubletree Hotel San Jose
2050 Gateway Place, San Jose, California, United States 95110

The 41st International Symposium on Forms and Business Processes was held on May 3-6, 2010 at the Double Tree Hotel in downtown San Jose. CA. BFMA is the only provider of training and information specifically developed for forms and business process professionals. BFMA has offered superior education to the forms community for over 50 years!

We have just returned from symposium, which provides a wonderful concentration of forms education and networking found nowhere else. There are as many perspectives on each symposium as there are attendees. We all bring different backgrounds and questions with us. In this issue of Forms Talk, in addition to the usual news from BFMA, you’ll find reflections on this special event from a variety of people. For those of you who were unable to attend, I hope this will give you a taste of the rich experience that one of BFMA’s in-person events can be. We’d love to have you be part of the tapestry. The next major event will be the Forms and Technology Conference in September.

Here’s a glimpse into Lisa Lee's experience of this symposium.

Favorite part overall: Willingness of attendees to share their expertise and ideas to help others. Some speakers brought example work products (such as procedures) they had developed, giving back in the BFMA way. Opportunity to discuss current challenges and to swap information with colleagues who understand. Generosity of those present, including sponsors, in general.

Best arrival moment: Having lunch with a colleague I hadn’t seen for a year, just before the event began.

Positive development: Several people stepped forward to contribute to the life of this association. For BFMA to thrive, people need to become members and become involved. I want every member to be part of the in-group of BFMA! There are plenty of meaningful opportunities to contribute. (So if you see an area you think you might like to get involved in, please don’t hold back!)

Most satisfying accomplishment as an association steward: Symposium was a success in all ways, including financial. This is an achievement given the economic climate and recent changes for BFMA. The hard work of your board of directors and staff paid off, and our goals for attendance and net income were met.

Most heartwarming moments as a board leader: The supportive response from members at the general business meeting, and the acknowledgment presented by the Nation’s Capital Chapter to board members.

Realization: Many of the winners of awards this year were not present to accept them in person. BFMA is largely a virtual organization. Realized that people do not have to be physically in attendance to make significant contributions to our industry and our association.

Personal thrill: In his keynote address, John Knightly referred to my February message about forms professionals as advocates for the customer. He added that we can also be advocates for automating processes to the full extent possible.

Sweet surprise: Discovering that a terrific former member who had been away for a couple of years was back.

Other stuff I love: Just interacting with others in our field, including delightful people from other countries. The informal sharing and spontaneous bubbling up of ideas of things we could do for the association that would be helpful for established forms managers and for people new to the field. Also, the ideas for getting the word about BFMA out to others who would benefit. Talking directly with the sponsor reps and getting up to date on their offerings and what they’re seeing as trends. Hanging out after all the day’s events were over.

A bit of wistfulness: Many former attendees didn't make it this year. Missed them. Maybe next time.

Most rewarding moment, professionally, and also best closing moment: hearing directly from another forms professional that my presentations had been helpful to her. This is what we come for. If you have considered sharing your expertise, I encourage you to participate in the Call for Presentations. Knowing that you’ve helped others is a great feeling.

By Lisa Lee, CEBS,FLMI
Association President

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