85 Proposals from 61 Speakers in 2 Weeks

In 2 weeks we’ve recieved 85 interesting prososals from 61 unique speakers. This is a great response.

Just last night, 1 day before the early bird submission due date, we receieved 25 proposals. 

Hoping to get a lot more intresting propsoals.

Have you submitted your proposal yet? If not, what are you waiting for? Take advantage of the early bird submission.

How to Submit a Proposal?

To submit a proposal for the Agile India 2012 Conference:

  1. Carefully read the instructions on Everything You Should Know about Submitting a World-Class Proposal
  2. Log into the Agile India 2012 Submission system.
    • If you don’t already have an account, create a new one.
    • If you’ve already registered in the submission system for any previous Agile Alliance conference, then you should be able to just use that id.
  3. Its strongly recommended you browse through the session proposals from Agile 2011 and Agile 2012 India conference before you submit your own proposal.
    • Accounts created for AgileIndia2012 works for both Agile2011 and AgileIndia2012.
    • Take note of the selected proposals and the ones that are not.  You will see some proposals that look very promising on the surface but have not got selected. Try to reason out “why”.
  4. Prepare a draft proposal.  Have it reviewed by one of your friend or colleague.  Make sure they understand your proposal and are able to explain the learning outcome from your session.
  5. Once you are happy with what you hear from them, go ahead and propose the session.  
  6. Contact the stage producers directly if you have any questions or concerns.
  7. Respond to any feedback or review comments coming from reviewer, producers and public with positive intent.
    • When a reviewer leaves a review on your proposal you’ll get email notification. However you don’t recieve any notification for public comments.
    • Its recommened you visit your proposal in the submission system daily.
    • Also at the bottom right corner on each proposal page, you can subscribe to an RSS feed for reviews by clicking “Subscribe to an RSS feed of reviews of this proposal.” This does not include public comments though.
  8. If you agree with the feedback, please update the proposal to reflect the same.

Good luck with your proposal.

Other important resources for presenters:

Everything You Should Know about Submitting a World-Class Proposal

Interested in presenting at the Agile India 2014 conference? But concerned that your proposal might not get accepted? We hope this blog can encourage you to submit a world-class proposal that would be hard to reject.

Unlike many other conferences, this is a community-driven conference. We (the community) organize the conference, we propose sessions, we review the proposals, we select the most relevant proposals, we attend the conference and we learn and benefit from it ultimately.

Hence writing good proposal is extremely important and one must understand the importance of the following major sections of a proposal:

  1. Session Level (Introductory, Practicing or Expert)
  2. Theme – Most relevant theme to which your proposal belongs
  3. Summary – Description of your session
  4. Session Type – Format of your session
  5. Process/Mechanics – Details about how you will run your session
  6. Learning Outcomes

Please read the instructions on Tips for Proposals and Mitch Lacey’s sound advice on Getting your Session Accepted at the Agile Alliance Conference.

Before submitting your proposal, make sure you browse through existing proposals. Feel free to comment/give feedback to other proposals.

If you’ve presented this or a similar topic, please provide links to slides, videos, pictures, etc. They would greatly help the reviewers make a decision.

To take advantage of the Early Bird Submission process, please read: Early Bird Submission: What’s the big rush?

Other important resources for presenters:

Early Bird Submission: What’s the big rush?

We understand that its hard to get all the details in your proposal right in the first pass.

Hence we strongly encourage you to submit your proposals as early as possible. By doing so, you can take advantage of the feedback you get from the community and the reviewers. Having more time to tweak your proposal based on the feedback is a sure shot strategy to get your proposal accepted.

Unfortunately a lot of submitters submit their proposal close to the deadline. They not only miss out on the feedback, but also towards the end, the reviewers are under high pressure. They tend to be ruthless in their selection.

“Release Early Release Often” principles works very well in this context also.

Be careful not to submit proposals which are not ready for feedback yet!

Make sure you have a MVP (Minium Viable Proposal) or MMP (Minium Marketable Proposal) before you submit them. If you’ve not thought through your session and submit a proposal which lacks the crux of the session, reviewers will write off the proposal. Reviewers won’t keep polling your proposal for updates. So once they write it off, it lost.

Take advantage of the Early Bird Submission: Get Accepted Early

This year, we have decided, that after the early bird submission deadline, we’ll select and confirm some proposals. They don’t have to wait till the end to get the acceptance notification. Following is the rationale behind it:
  • Over the years, we’ve seen that bulk of the submissions come at the every end, close to the deadline. Which chokes the whole review process and also submitters loose out on feedback. Good sessions get dropped out, because something was not clear in the proposal and reviewers have an attitude that “its not my problem” 
  • We like it or not, at some level, we are all deadline driven. If we give an additional deadlines, submitters might hit one of them. 
  • If we get a really good proposal early on, we can actually confirm with the submitter, that their session is in. We don’t have to wait till the end. This means they can start planning their trip. Even if later there are better proposals, they get the first mover advantage. Hopefully changing the late submission attitude a bit. 
  • Once we pick a session, we don’t need to revisit them. Reducing the number of submissions we need to consider in the end. Helping us spread out the work. 
  • If we select and confirm certain sessions early on, it would give other submitters an opportunity to see what quality and type of session are accepted. This would help us to avoid similar sessions, because people will think “this topic is already selected, let me propose another topic”. It would help them fine-tune their submission, hopefully reducing some iterations and encouraging more submissions. 
  • With an early bird submission, we get an additional opportunity to reach out to people and keep the buzz about the conference on. 
Hurry up, the early bird submission closes on 26th September.

Can Stage Producers and Reviewers submit Session Proposals?

Absolutely! 

All Stage Producers and Reviewers are possionate leaders in their respective topics. We like them to lead by example. So we certainly encourage and value their submission.

However we assure you that we’ll do our best to have a fair and transparent selection process. For ex. their proposal will be reviewed independently by at least two other reviewers.

What does a Stage Reviewer do?

The ultimate responsibility of the reviewer is to help the Stage Producers put together a fantastic program for the stage. Every reviewer should try to improve the quality and experience of the stage.

  • They provide feedback to the speakers and engage in a conversation with them via the submission system.
  • They work with other reviewers (program committee) to ensure consistency and integrity of topics at the stage. 
  • They market the stage and attract good proposals. They evangelize the stage in their circle of influence (companies, friends, social groups, etc.)
  • They are passionate about the subject of the stage and they help to push the envelope by advancing the state of art in the given domain or body of knowledge. 
  • They review proposals, evaluate the relevance, usefulness and feasibility of the proposals plus the speakers, provide feedback that motivates and help the speakers prepare the proposal for a possible inclusion in the conference. 

Best reviewers are fair, impartial and inclusive. They mentor the speakers to structure the proposals better. They go an extra mile to give specific feedback to speakers to improve the quality of their proposal.

Good reviewers move emphasis away from just accept/reject to converse and improve.

Reviewers can also suggest an alternative stage to the speakers if their proposal is not inline with the vision of the stage.