pitch perfect: How you can select what sessions we’ll run with during #commscampstayshome

by Emma Rodgers

Why pitching is winning at Commscamp

Commscamp is back. Albeit a little different. ‘Hooray’ I hear you shout. ‘But I’m unsure of pitching and how the sessions are selected and how it works!’ you say.

Never fear, here’s a few words to explain how it works and to hopefully put you more at ease.

We’ll have time for three 45-minute sessions on August 20 and the same again on August 25.

Each 45-minute slot will have six or seven alternative topics and they’re chosen at the start of the day by people pitching or in other words giving a 30-second summary of the session.

I remember my first time at Commscamp – it was cold and snowy and it was a complete eyeopener. I’d only every been to formal conferences before with key note speakers so it felt surreal not knowing what the agenda covered until you got there. And it felt even more strange that you actually had a chance to set the agenda for the day yourself.

I remember the fear at the thought of speaking in a room full of people – I may seem I have a lot to say for myself but I have a real nervousness of public speaking – probably comes from a job with years of advising others in the spotlight rather than being in it myself. There was no way I was going to put myself out there.

But then with a lot of positive support from the people there and after a lot of woman solidarity as we realised lots of men didn’t seem to have such imposter syndrome as their female counterparts, I went for it.

Despite the sweaty palms, I got my pitch out there and the response in the room made me feel on top of the world. Not because my session was ground-breaking – I can’t even remember what it was now – but because I’d done it.

To boot, I remember we also solved a real wicked problem that had been a major challenge for me for quite some time. It was a major achievement for me and a landmark time in my own personal and professional development. It gave me a quiet confidence that I could and should do it more.

Roll forward to 2020 and #CommscampStaysHome – a digital Commscamp – but where the values  are still the same:

  • It’s a supportive environment
  • No pitch is ever a bad one – whether you have only two people in your room or 30, I’m still in no doubt that you’ll still get what you need.
  • Imposter syndrome has no place here – everyone’s contribution is valid and it will be treated as such
  • Solutions are provided and shared
  • Hierarchy has no place here

You’ll solve your wicked issue and most importantly, you’ll feel proud of what you’ve achieved. So if you’re lucky enough to have a ticket, start to think now about what you want to pitch and know you’ll be surrounded by supportive people. That’s why pitching  is winning at #Commscamp

Take a look at ideas for pitches that have already been shared in the Commscamp Facebook group. It’s where you can also test out any session ideas you have too. 

Big thanks to our super main sponsors Touch DesignGranicus,  and Brand Stencil.

Thanks to our co-sponsors texthelpDan Slee, CAN Digital and Birdsong Consultancy.

Thanks to our supporters: Public Sector Digital Transformation Forum CIPR Local Public Services and David Banks Media Law.

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