BizConf at Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island Resort, August 20-21

[Apologies for the slightly-off-topic posting.]

BizConf is a one-of-a-kind event that I am hosting about 3 months from now here in northern Florida. It's a 2-day conference specifically crafted for independent consultants and owners/managers of small to mid-sized web consultancies. Because of who I am and the audience I can reach, I expect the majority of the attendees to be involved with Ruby on Rails, although it isn't a technology-specific conference.

Information and registration now available at

-- Additional Information --

BizConf is on Thursday and Friday and the Ritz-Carlton is offering steep discounts on their room rates for up to 3 days before and after the conference, making it s a perfect opportunity to turn your trip into a vacation getaway with friends and family. I selected the venue particularly because of the luxurious rooms, restaurants and spa, not to mention its location on some of Florida's finest white-powder beachfront and warm, sparkling blue ocean. Amelia Island is conveniently about 30 minutes drive east of Jacksonville airport (JAX) and local transportation can be arranged through the conference.

Registration is limited to 75 people in order to keep the event intimate and maximize interaction between our presenters and attendees. We have over 20 compelling presenters confirmed so far, with additional announcements happening soon. The following list of featured presenters only skims the surface of who you can expect to meet and learn from at BizConf:

My friend and mentor, Roy Singham, will be keynoting and spending one-on-one time with attendees. Roy famously grew his tiny Chicago-based consultancy into world-class software consulting powerhouse ThoughtWorks, admirably working to make positive change in the world every step of the way.

Jerry Weinberg is one of my heroes. He has over 30 years of consulting experience and has written many notable books including "The Secrets of Consulting" and "The Psychology of Computer Programming". He will be presenting small group experiential sessions including "Learning to Say No" and "Great Client Expectations". You can get a taste of his writing on his blog at

Esther Derby and Johanna Rothman are esteemed trainers and authors of the Pragmatic's "Behind Closed Doors: Secrets of Great Management" among other titles. They will be very busy at BizConf with sessions topics including:

- Recruiting and Keeping Talent Happy - Leveraging Personal Sources of Power - Levers for Change - Interviewing Customers

Don Gray coaches software development organizations to higher levels of productivity. His background in machine and process automation provides the foundation for working with organizational systems and change. His workshops at BizConf will focus on personality types and teamwork, team productivity, and retrospectives.

Ian McFarland, Principal at the esteemed San Francisco-based consultancy Pivotal Labs will present a new model for selling a potent mix of Agile, Ruby on Rails and cloud-computing to CIOs and CTOs in the enterprise world

Corey Haines is one of the warmest, most genuine voices of the Software Craftmanship movement. He is rapidly gaining friends and notoriety from his travel around the world as the wandering journeyman software craftman, sharing programming language with technology professionals in exchange for room and board.

James Duncan Davidson will provide attendees that bring their own DSLRs with a unique opportunity to learn photography from a master of the craft. Learn how to maximize your marketing with candid shots of your people in action.

Jessie Shternshus is founder and owner of The Improv Effect and has worked with companies such as CBS, Paramount Pictures, MTV and Sesame Workshop. Jessie merges her lifelong passion and expertise of improvisational acting with the fast paced demands of the corporate world. In her classes and workshops she helps people become better listeners, team players, leaders and communicators. Her physically engaging and playful workshops are relevant to all facets of life and are sure to be a fun highlight for BizConf participants.

Like I said above, that was only a partial list of the speakers and topics we have lined up for you. This conference is very personal to me -- I am handcrafting the program to maximize the interest to other people like myself: entrepreneurs in the web development space, particularly my peers running successful Rails consultancy shops.

If you register before July 17th you can take advantage of the early-bird pricing of $1995. I know that cost is out of reach of some of you reading this message, and for that I apologize. The reality is that running a conference like BizConf is quite expensive and entails a great deal of financial risk for the organizers. I want to take a moment to thank my partners at Hashrocket, as well as our other sponsors: nGen Works and Engine Yard for helping to make this dream a reality.

See you in August!

Obie Fernandez CEO & Founder | Hashrocket 904.435.1673 office 404.934.9201 mobile