The Enterprise 2.0 Conference has added a great feature around proposal submission this year (the Call for Papers deadline was December 18th), and I wanted to blog about it because it's such a good example of an enterprise walking it like they talk it.
For the 2009 E2.0 Conference in Boston last summer, registrants had the ability to create a profile and connect with each other online more than a month before the event. You could see who else was attending, create a personalized agenda, and have discussions.
This year they've started the party (ahem, the networking and collaboration) even earlier, at the proposal stage. After registering with some basic information, speaker hopefuls have the ability to view all submitted proposals (filterable by keyword, category, author, etc.), comment on them, and connect with the submitters. (SpigIt is the partner providing this service.)
As a prospective speaker, it was hugely valuable for me to review the existing proposals, so that I wouldn't duplicate a topic already submitted. Once I submitted my paper, the experience became even richer. Within the hour I received a comment from another submittter, and we had a good dialogue around our differing perspectives on the issue. I learned some interesting information and made a contact I'll want to seek out at the conference and meet in person.
I'll also be able to see what stage of review my proposal is in during the process. Such a difference from the black hole I've experienced with some conference proposals.
Nicely played, Enterprise 2.0 Conference.