During Dreamforce, the city of San Francisco is all but taken over by people who use, love, and want to fully immerse themselves in the Salesforce ecosystem—and have a blast. The big question is, how can you maximize your time there?
As Dreamforce veterans, the Penrod team pooled their tips to help you make the most out of your experience.
Build your agenda
One of the first things to do is get synced up with Agenda Builder. Here, you’ll be able to find and register for sessions related to your industry and interests. It uses Einstein Analytics, so it offers recommended sessions based on your user profile, which you can customize. Of course, you’re free to choose sessions that appeal to you. They run the gamut, from basic to technical and tailored to various levels. Your agenda syncs back to Dreamforce’s event app, so you’ll always know where you need to be.
- Go with the flow. You’re a go-getter and want to hit every session—that’s great! It’s also (sadly, we know) impossible. So don’t sweat it. Go with the flow. Don’t try to make every session. There are so many networking and knowledge opportunities at Dreamforce, you won’t ever miss out.
- Pay attention to where you’re booking sessions. Sessions are often not in the same building. Look to see where you’re going and if you need to cover a lot of ground between sessions, plan accordingly.
- Didn’t get a spot? Show up anyway. With so many sessions, people to meet, and knowledge to soak up, Dreamforce is busy for everyone—and sometimes people don’t make it to their scheduled session. There are generally some extra spots, so get to the session about 15 minutes early and chances are you’ll be able to get that sweet spot you wanted.
Network – and don’t miss the parties!
After spending a day learning, walking, learning, and doing some more walking, you’ll want to cut loose. Good thing you’ll have your pick of literally dozens of evening networking events (aka parties) to help you relax.
The biggest is Dreamfest, hosted by Salesforce themselves. This is where you can blow off some steam with tens of thousands of your closest Salesforce friends. And you’ll have the added benefit of seeing a great band, such as the Killers, U2, Foo Fighters or in 2018, Metallica.
- Don’t miss the parties. It bears repeating: do not miss the parties. Not only can you relax, you can network with like-minded people in a casual setting. And there’s something for everyone, from early morning networking breakfasts to late-night concerts and everything in between.
- Sign up for parties early. Some have a max capacity, and you don’t want to be left out. Plus, signing up early saves you having to register at the door.
A lot of events have a keynote speaker, but Dreamforce is all about doing things big. That’s why they have several keynotes from inspiring leaders and visionaries across industries. It’s no wonder people have viewing parties to watch livestreams. You definitely won’t be bored.
You can’t go wrong with any of the keynotes, but seeing Marc Benioff, Salesforces chairman and co-CEO is always a motivating, don’t-miss experience.
Be sure to bring
As Dreamforce veterans, Penrod has strong opinions on what to bring to maximize your experience. Add these to your checklist and you’ll be well prepared:
- Your phone. Dreamforce organizers give you a backpack filled with swag, like a water bottle and key information. What they won’t give you is a phone, so be sure to bring your own. Also, leave your laptop at home. Most people go from sessions to networking to parties and don’t want to have to lug around a piece of hardware. Your phone will give you the access you need and is much easier to carry.
- Comfortable shoes. You’ll be walking—a lot.
- Layers. You’ll be inside and outside and the temps will vary for both. Bring layers so you can focus on learning instead of how hot or cold you are.
- Business cards. You never know who you’ll meet.
Bring a portable battery. Once you’re out of your hotel room and at the conference, you might be there through the day and evening. There are few things worse than seeing your phone about to die, so don’t forget your charger.
One final Penrod tip? When in doubt, look for the park rangers!