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Home Blog WordCamp Mumbai 2017 – My Experience Of India’s Biggest WordCamp

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 – My Experience Of India’s Biggest WordCamp

At times, I get the feeling if I should write this post about a WordCamp experience or just leave it. But every WordCamp is unique. The experiences of each one of them are different. Writing them down has the advantage of the memories having a permanent imprint on the web, and thus I can go back & read them any time. Ofcourse, the world gets to read them too!

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 was different for 2 reasons:

  1. It’s our home WordCamp.
  2. I was speaking here.

Tyche Softwares was also a Silver Sponsor at the event.

No Travels, No Hotel Bookings

As the WordCamp was happening in Mumbai, we didn’t have to worry about traveling to another location or doing any hotel reservations. Tyche Softwares is based out of Mumbai. 25% of our team is remote. And they are also based in Mumbai.

Doing travel bookings & hotel bookings is the most boring part of going to any WordCamp. Thankfully the only tickets we had to buy was that of the WordCamp itself.

Full Team Presence

During WordCamp Udaipur & WordCamp Nashik, a few members were not able to attend. Couple of our team members from the Content Writing Team – Chaitali Mehta, Kinjal Paleja) hadn’t attended a WordCamp until now. They got a chance to be present at WordCamp Mumbai.

I wasn’t able to attend WordCamp Mumbai 2016. So this was the 1st occasion where we had a chance for our entire team to attend a WordCamp.

(from left to right, standing) Komal Maru, Chetna Bhutka, Khyati Gala, Vishal Kothari, Kartik Parmar, Bhavik Kiri, Chaitali Mehta, Kinjal Paleja (sitting) Pinal Shah, Priyanka Jagtap, Moxa Jogani, Apeksha Shah

My Talk

I was shortlisted by the Organizing team to speak on Importance Of Marketing & Content Writing For Plugin Developers. After getting a nod from them, I kept on thinking for 3 days: what exactly should I speak about in this.

I had lost the outline that I had submitted to the organizers. I asked Meher, one of the Organizers of WC Mumbai to please send me the session outline. And she replied immediately.

I spent considerable time to prepare for this talk. I was speaking solo after a gap of 2 years. My last 2 talks were panels – so the anxiety was less.

The most exciting part of my preparation was the fact that I went through the websites of the Attendees of WordCamp Mumbai & managed to find improvements that were relevant to my session. I wasn’t planning to name any of them, but I figured there wouldn’t be better examples in that context.

We did a mock session at our office. And I was all over the place in that! But it helped.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Importance Of Content Writing & Marketing For Plugin Developers

When the time came to deliver, I think I faired decent. My team mentioned that it was good. Some friends mentioned that I did well.

One by one, I had people approaching me after the session as to what they should do to start in Marketing.

One lady invited me at her office & asked me if I could deliver the same talk for an extended time to their development team. That’s when I finally believed that the talk did go well & the audience could relate with it.

And when I reached home that night, my wife Riddhi had bought this cake as she realized from the tweets that the session has gone well.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Cake by Riddhi

Quite a celebration! You can view the slides here.

Meeting People

I did meet the usual suspects: Rahul Bansal, Nirav Mehta, Amit Kumar Singh, Aslam Multani, Bigul Malayi, Harshad Mane & Sahil Majethia.

It’s always a pleasure to be in their company. They’ve so much to learn, so much to share. Each of them has a successful WordPress agency – doing either services, or plugins, or both. Although Sahil, Bigul & Harshad don’t own an agency yet, my wish is that they do open a company some day. 😉

The always innovating Nirav gifted us a unique card game.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Nirav Card Game

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Nirav Card Game

Nirav spoke on his Adventures in Entrepreneurship as the last talk on the 2nd day of the WordCamp. Usually they keep the biggest crowd pullers at the end of the day of people don’t leave. I think the organizers were spot on by keeping Nirav’s session just before the closing notes.

Rahul spoke on Writing PHP – The WordPress Way! Although I didn’t get to attend that talk, everyone in my team was all praise about it. Interactions with Rahul always have one thing: I need good people.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Vishal Kothari & Rahul Bansal

Anyone wanting to work on challenging projects, rtCamp is the way to go. They’re the only WordPress agency in Asia who is a WordPress.com VIP Partner.

I also got to meet a few people for the first time.

R. Bhavesh

I’ve heard about Bhavesh from Nirav. Bhavesh is the Founder of Templatic, a company that produces quality WordPress themes & plugins. They’re doing it since 2008 & have about 85+ themes under their belt.

I got to interact with Bhavesh on a few occasions during the 2 days. He almost missed his train to Surat on the night of 26th March. If that was missed, I would be writing about it here. 😉

Bhanu Ahluwalia

I hadn’t heard about Bhanu earlier. I hadn’t heard about MyThemeShop either. They’re doing some really awesome work in WordPress. They have close to 110 WordPress Themes & about 30 WordPress Plugins. They’ve a large social media presence & quite a few happy customers.

Bhanu mentioned to me that he was impressed with the Tyche Softwares team, particularly also because we have about 75% female staff. There is a lot to learn from Bhanu & I intend to do that over the coming few days.

Sanjay Dabhoya & Alkesh

I met Sanjay & Alkesh from Solwin Infotech at WordCamp Udaipur. Sanjay is the founder of Solwin Infotech and Alkesh is Product Manager at Solwin. As I was one of the panelists for Panel Discussion “Building a Successful WordPress Business”, Sanjay had asked a question during the session and any one panelist had to answer question, but surprisingly all panelist had shown interest and given their views on the question. Sanjay sounded inquisitive as I was answering his question and he further approached me at our booth to discuss more about the same. We discussed about marketing concerns related to their products.

Solwin Infotech is primarily a service agency that delivers quality WordPress websites to clients across the globe. They have products for WordPress as well as Magento & are trying to gain traction on those. Couple of their main products includes Avartan Slider and Blog Designer. Both have ‘free’ as well as ‘paid’ version.

I interacted with Sanjay a few times over phone after WordCamp Udaipur. We were also able to meet for a couple of hours at my office a day before WordCamp Mumbai. They’re working hard towards establishing their products & making a name for it.

Shivam Vahia

Technically I have met Shivam earlier. I only knew him as the Blackberry guy! He is the Founder & CEO of EOTO. The interesting thing is.. that he is still studying. This time though we did get a few minutes to chat with each other.

What does EOTO do? It’s a one-stop destination for Tech Enthusiasts with up-to-date info so that they never have to go hunting for news. Not just news, but they also provide unbiased reviews for the latest tech gadgets.

I really like the work they’re doing. Their YouTube channel has over 20K subscribers. It proves that their users love to watch their reviews.

Daman Jeet, Aman Saxena

Daman Jeet is the Co-Founder of Wisetr & Aman is a Project Manager there. Wisetr is a WordPress service agency located in New Delhi. They have a very good team doing some quality work building WordPress websites.

They approached me at our booth after my talk.

So Daman Jeet was telling me that last year, he met Chris Lema. And among other things, he expressed his desire to build something with WooCommerce. That’s when Chris mentioned to him that he should check out Tyche Softwares, they are doing pretty good work with WooCommerce.

This was the best part of my meeting with Daman Jeet. 😉

Aurovrata Venet

Aurovrata had some tips for me based on my talk. He is part of the Creative Strategy & Analytics team at Syllogic Consultants.

The difference between them & rest of the companies is that they solely work with Indian businesses. Why? Because they believe that this is where their efforts can have an impact on an awakening India .He was part of the Anna Hazare movement against corruption.

Aurovrata also spoke at the WordCamp on Developing a multi-lingual website using Polylang.

I think you should read more about them. This is the most impactful team that I have read about & met at a WordCamp.

Prakash Bhatt

I’ve worked with Prakash for over 3 years when we were working together with Magnet Technologies. After I left Magnet in 2009, this was the first time I was meeting Prakash – after a gap of 8 years. I was happy to meet him at the WordCamp. It’s always wonderful to connect with your past colleagues & learn what they’ve been upto.

Prakash is now a Director at ViitorCloud Technologies Pvt. Ltd. They’re primarily into delivering IT solutions – in WordPress & other technologies as well. One of their notable projects is developing the website for Statue Of Unity. It’s going to be one of the tallest statues in the world of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

Nagesh Pai

I had heard about Nagesh earlier. He works as a Happiness Engineer at Automattic Inc.

He spoke on How I built an online community “radio” (and my career in Digital Media). It’s a fascinating journey that he has been through. He spoke in detail about how a community radio website that he built in 2007 helped him get big career breaks.

In his talk, he appreciated the work culture at Automattic & was thankful for the exposure which he is getting due to working there.

And there are many more..

I did meet a few other people as well like Saravanan Sivaraman, Deval Talati & the other team members from StoreApps like Ami Mehta & rest of their team. Some of them are:

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - WordCamp Mumbai Contacts
My Swag from WordCamp Mumbai 😉

Khyati’s Panel Participation

Khyati Gala from our team participated in a group discussion on Manual Vs. Automated Testing. She was accompanied by other valued people like Bigul Malayi, Ankit K Gupta & Vibha Tiwari. The discussion was moderated by Sudar Muthu.

Khyati handles all the testing at Tyche Softwares. Functional Testing, Testing for Compatibilities, Testing for big releases like WooCommerce 3.0.0 – all of those are done by Khyati along with Apeksha.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Sudar Muthu, Ankit Gupta, Bigul Malayi, Khyati Gala, Vibha Tiwari
Sudar Muthu, Ankit Gupta, Bigul Malayi, Khyati Gala, Vibha Tiwari (from left to right)
WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Happy Panel
Happy Panel 😉

Although I didn’t get to interact with Sudar, I just saw that he works as a Senior Web Engineer with 10up & also has notable contributions to WordPress Core as well as plugins. You should check out his work.

Organizers

I only have the organizers & volunteers of WordCamp Mumbai to thank for all of the above. You can view all of them here. They are:

  • Aditya Kane
  • Ajay Maurya
  • Alexander Gounder
  • Meher Bala
  • Ratnesh Sonar
  • Sahil Majethia
  • Vachan Kudmule
  • Vishal Mukadam

A big thank you to each one of you & all the volunteers as well.

WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - A round of applause for each one of us
A round of applause for each one of us
WordCamp Mumbai 2017 - Engaged Attendees at Rahul Bansal's Talk
Engaged Attendees at Rahul Bansal’s Talk
Browse more in: Personal reflections, Tyche Softwares, WordCamp

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Hi Vishal! “The most exciting part of my preparation was the fact that I went through the websites of the Attendees of WordCamp Mumbai & managed to find improvements that were relevant to my session.” This was the best thing you did in your pre-paration. What a co-incidence! You didn’t get to interact with Sudar, and I also missed his session on day 1. BUT, in your session, when you asked to interact with someone for 30 seconds, Sudar was the only one sitting on the other end of my empty row. So, that was who I interacted with. Lucky… Read more »

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