Last week, CMS Critic were in Paris, attending Jahia's first ever international conference, Jahia One.
I previously covered day one of the conference, along with day two, detailing some of the biggest Jahia news of the year so far, including Jahia 7, Portal Factory and eCommerce Factory.
Today however, I wanted to delve into other aspects of Jahia One – away from keynote quotes and product announcements.
I'd like to take you through the experience of a typical Jahia One attendee, exploring the smaller details which usually go unreported at such events.
Jahia One was held at the Pan Piper conference and events centre , deep in the heart of Paris.
Spread out over two floors, with multiple conference rooms being used at once, the Jahia conference was well housed, allowing attendees to freely roam between talks, or sit and enjoy presentations within a comfortable setting.
The modern design of Pan Piper suited Jahia perfectly. Seating was comfortable, and the well-lit main stage created the perfect setting for Jahia executives to talk everybody through what was to come for the company.
A menu can say a lot about an event organiser, and when it comes to conferences hosted by companies such as Jahia, the same rule applies. Thankfully, the food was absolutely fantastic.
Soups, salads, Salmon, assorted breads and even miniature hot dogs were on offer, all beautifully presented, and pleasing to the taste buds.
However, it wasn't just the quality of the food which was impressive, but the way in which the entire lunch break was set up.
Not only was there a large table being constantly re-stocked with food, but waiters and waitresses were also on hand to take dishes to attendees, who were standing around in conversation. A small task, but one which helps keep a talkative room alive.
Courses were also changed periodically, with starters turning into fuller meals, and eventually into delicious deserts.
A pleasant atmosphere is made up of more than just polite greetings at the door of an event. A great atmosphere also needs bubbling attendees who are excited to be a part of the conference. Additionally, conference organisers and speakers need to be amongst the crowd, answering questions and making connections.
As mentioned in my day one coverage, Anne de Forsan was active during the lunch break on day one of the event, interacting with attendees with a microphone and a cameraman in tow. She was capturing attendees on camera answering questions about their experiences so far, sharing their views and airing their observations. It was all good fun.
Overall, the lunch session embodied the event, with a bubbly atmosphere full of professionalism, but not without a hint of fun and friendliness.
Another noteworthy aspect of the conference, was it's size.
With around 170 attendees, Jahia One can be considered as a relatively small conference – which worked brilliantly in its favour. The smaller, cosier feeling on the conference grew as it went on, allowing attendees to meet and build relationships throughout the day, instead of losing sight of each other within minutes of greeting.
The Gala Dinner on day one helped solidify these relationships further, allowing attendees to relax more around those they had already met. Essentially, thanks to its smaller size, the conference was able to have its very own mini-community by the end of day two.
A Roaring Success
As an attendee, I feel it's fair to say that the Jahia One conference was a roaring success.
All Jahia executives and guest speakers were easy to listen to as they presented on stage, whilst CEO Elie Auvray kept both days flowing nicely with some light humour peppered throughout his own presentations.
The Gala Dinner capped off day one off perfectly, and allowed attendees to mingle just a little further in preparation for a smooth, yet exciting day two.
All in all, this may have been Jahia's first ever international conference, but they pulled it off with perfection anyway.