Thank You For ALE2011

Posted by on Sep 11, 2011 in Agile & Lean, Community, Conference, Linchpin | 4 Comments

As you may have noticed, during the last months I’ve been part of an amazing team that organised a conference.

The event is called ALE2011 and just finished last Friday. It was amazing. I’m still trying to sort my thoughts and learnings, and I do not want to compare it with other (un)conferences, but the organisation was definitely the best project I was ever involved with.

Thank You

Thank You!

Before I start to get into the details of the organisation in a later post, why and how it went so well with such an amazing emergent outcome, I need to thank a lot of people, for their efforts, understanding, passion and patience.

  • The biggest Thank You goes to my wife, Christiane, who supported my work in the team with patience, passion, and, especially in the final phase, with a lot of work. I couldn’t have done this without you.
  • Thank you, Marion, that you supported the idea of agile42 supporting a European conference in Berlin from the moment I suggested it, and for all the effort our office and I have been putting in its support, especially all the accounting. That was much more than just sponsorship.
  • Thank you to all the sponsors. I’ll explicitly mention three of the here: Nokia ovi.maps, J.B. Rainsberger and agile42. Without their early commitment we wouldn’t have been able to even start. I’m still impressed we found more than 25 sponsors… You deserve your own post.
  • Thank you, Marcin, Marc, Oana, Franck, Ivana. We’ve been this organisation’s heart and bones together, and I’m especially grateful for your friendship, guidance, patience and passion when times where tough. And of course for the many hours of work…

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  • Thank you Marc, Sven, Eelco, Franck for your work on the participants sofa, through multiple levels of registration, payments, reminders, more reminders…
  • Thank you Catia, Eelco, Alex, Pablo, Sven, for being first-moment committers and sharing our distributed leadership, although some of you could not be there this week.
  • Thanks Alex and Aleksey for their great work with our website!
  • Thank you to Greg & Greg and their student volunteers: You’ve made this event run smoothly and you sorted out so many things we hadn’t thought of before… Great Job!
  • Thank you Nick, Natalia, Ivana, Christian, Wolfgang, Jaume for you work with integrating the European communities. Your hard work paid off!
  • Thank you Jule, Micheal, MichaelPabloChristian for your work on the press release and its translation…
  • Thank you Jurgen, for the idea and for getting me on board from the start… For the trust, vision and a dream to realise.
  • Thank you, Mike, for the facilitation of our Open Space. And for luring me into this community
  • Thank you, Sergey, for the basecamp administration, for gentle guidance and coaching on the way.
  • Thank you, Ken, for the retrospective facilitation. And for your spontaneous help with the kids…
  • Thank you, Monika, for the preparation of the Spouse&Kids program, and your amazing energy and passion to carry it through.
  • Thank you Monika and Christiane, for missing so much of the official program to be with the kids. You had a hard time as you had to work with the most unknowns. Thanks for making the best of it! This unconference got much of its shine and awesomeness from your work.
  • Thank you, Ken, Will and Andrea, for finding so many industry topics and talks.
  • Thank you, Erik, for creating the Exciter sofa. Thank you Jens for the excitement on the way—sad you could not come.
  • Thank you my dear friends MelanieMikeIvanaKatrin and Gitte for coming. I still can’t fully grasp that I met you all at once.
  • Thank you Liz, Chris, Olav for Feature Injection, Real Options, Distributed Cognition, Deliberate Discovery and more ideas that made part of this endeavour possible and the emergent outcome mostly understandable… And for the Love.
  • Thanks to Bjarte, Rachel, Dave for the keynotes, Jon for the coding dojo and all the speakers
  • Thanks for all the hugs, thank yous, best wishes and congratulations. You are most welcome!
My Sofa

Thank you Silvana for the sofa!

  • Thanks for any other kind of support, thanks to everybody I did not mention because you just skipped my attention while writing this, thanks to all who came… Each and every one of you has made this a bit more special to me.
  • Thank you Katrin, and all the staff at NH Hotel Berlin Mitte, for making this possible and supporting our lean organisation in the most flexible way.



  1. Andrea Heck
    September 12, 2011

    Hi Olaf,

    a big hug to you, and an even bigger THANK YOU for being the linchpin that you are and that you have been in the journey to creating this wonderful ALE2011 unconference!

    Thanks for the flowers! Looking forward to ALE2012 preparation… – but yes, after taking a healthy breath.


  2. Chris Matts
    September 13, 2011

    Hi Olaf

    My respect for you is even greater. This post shows how thanks should be given. Everyone gets a mention.

    Thank you


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    • Olaf
      September 13, 2011

      Thanks, Mate:-)

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    September 13, 2011

    […] Nick, Oana, Olaf, Pablo, Sergey, Sven, Will and Wolfgang. ( I stole the list from here […]


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