Earlier this week I attended a seminar delivered by Forrester, the global research company. This was my first ever Forrester event, but I have been an enthusiastic consumer of their marketing, collaboration and information management research for some time. So I was keen to see what they offered 'live'. The event was entitled "Welcome To The Empowered Era" and promised analysts Ted Schadler (US), Mark Mulligan (UK), together with Australian analysts, Tim Sheedy and Steven Noble.
The seminar is built around the book Empowered: Unleash Your Employees, Energize Your Customers, and Transform Your Business, by Josh Bernoff and Ted Schadler. Here is a bit of the 'shtick' from the website:
"Your customers constantly use groundswell technologies like social, mobile, and video to connect and share information. The only way your organization can support these empowered customers is by empowering your workforce with the same technologies.
In their book, Empowered, Forrester's own Josh Bernoff and Ted Schadler provide real-world examples of how innovative leaders — and their teams — have harnessed the groundswell to solve the problems of empowered customers."
I haven't read the book yet, but Ted's contribution to the seminar was pretty impressive. The micro-site around the book also features a blog that I recommend. That brings me to the seminar itself, and I would like some feedback if possible.
So what were my impressions? The analysts are smart guys - Forrester is full of them - so their research set my expectations high. I did gain insights around the need to empower employees so they can better meet empowered customers. So the day was well spent and I appreciated hearing from the four analysts. But if we are talking about empowering, as a customer of Forrester I felt/feel a little frustrated that I wasn't more empowered. Why? Well it comes down to expectations. The seminar cost a couple of thousand dollars, and yet the Empowered book itself (US$18.45 on Amazon) was not included, and only 2 of the presentations were down-loadable after the event.
So tell me, am I being petty and unreasonable? I can live with 'whiny', so please drop me a line with your comments! I will be interested to see if Forrester is also listening to their empowered customer ...